Lean philosophy was adopted by Toyota in it’s manufacturing and it has been highly adopted everywhere since then. What Lean teaches us is to remove any unnecessary tasks from the process which are slowing down the output and can be omitted. The same philosophy can be applied to any startup and if followed correctly can help you grow big.
In this article, I will cover some of the basics which can be applied to your startup to stay lean and launch.
There is nothing called a perfect product because there is always room for improvement in your product based on your consumer’s behaviour. You might realise that you can make improvements in UI or UX or the functional flow of the product. So when you are first launching your startup, you shouldn’t focus on launching the full product without validating the market.
To keep it lean, don’t spend too much time on thinking about the full product and think about fulfilling the urgent consumer needs and launching the Minimal Viable Product (MVP) to test the market. Once the MVP is launched you can then analyse the consumer behaviour with various tools available in the market such as HotJar where you can record videos and generate heat maps. Google Analytics is a free tool which can help you analyse your website visitor’s behaviour and you can see where people are dropping out and focus on those areas.
Only cost saving can’t make you go lean and you might end up with a bad product. Lean means removing the wasteful activities out of the process but it doesn’t mean compromising the quality of your startup or product. Having said that, you should save on costs but make sure you are engaging the right people.
There are many websites out there where you can find resources but the best way possible is to try someone out with a smaller assignment before handing over the whole project. Rather than trusting someone unknown to help you for your startup it’s best to speak to other fellow startups if you are in a shared space to see if they have that in-house capability and might be able to help you. Asking someone for help can do wonders, trust me.
Launching too early or launching too late
Don’t rush to launch your startup or product just because you are too excited. You want to make sure that your MVP is ready before you launch it by testing it with a known set of audience. Have the right strategy in place for marketing your startup or product, which should kick in with the launch whether it’s Facebook Ads or Google AdWords. Measure the results, learn, improve and update.
Don’t either wait too long to launch or else that excitement dies down. Keep in mind that it’s the first iteration and you will need to quickly validate and learn to improve it further. Some startups make the mistake of waiting too long and end up exhausting all their funds leaving them begging for money from the investors who can then dictate their own terms.
You want to make sure you build the MVP by finding the right people. There is no perfect product and even products like Twitter and LinkedIn have their own share of problems and they are still learning, improving and coming up with something new to keep the consumers engaged. So to sum it up, you need to launch the product with the right marketing strategy; quickly validate the the idea; learn from consumer feedback; and keep improving.