Episode 11 – Rookie mistake no. 1

Hi!

In this episode, I want to share the rookie mistake I have committed and it makes me pretty nervous…

AppForFans is based on an idea like every other start-up. With the idea in our mind, Thomas and I began to think and develop features, design etc. Hereafter we did the same with our developers. We have plenty of good ideas for the app and so far, no harm done… Until now…
Thomas and I asked the developers to start working on the plan we made, which does include quite a lot of features.
The problem is, that many of the features are more nice-to-have and not need-to-have. This means, that our developers have spent a lot of hours working on features, that we really didn’t know was necessary or not. The result of this is unnecessary developing hours, which equals unnecessary spending of funding and an extended launch.

Looking Back
If I could turn back time, I definitely would. What we should have done, was to figure out which of our features was need-to-have and which was nice-to-have.
This way, we could have our developers focusing on creating a prototype, which could be tested faster by actual users. Based on the feedback we receive in tests, we then can decide if some of our nice-to-have features should be added or perhaps even new ideas.

In sports I was used to travelling around for tournaments. The purpose was naturally the victory, but other than that it is a fantastic opportunity to get to know your own process.
You against your opponent, and the things you have practiced needs to come out. It is at tournaments you get to know, if you have developed, where you need to develop, where your opponents are stronger and where your strengths are.
These questions will be answered, no matter if you get the victory or a defeat. You bring back the experiences you get, back to training, practicing to keep developing yourself and your game.

At this point, start-ups are the same as sports. Running tests are our tournaments. The feedback we receive are the experiences we make to keep developing our app.

This way of thinking hit me, as I recently started to read “The Lean Startup” which by the way have my warmest recommendations.

I get stomach ache thinking, that we might have spent a lot of time and money on features, that we basically do not know will be useful or not.

The work flow is now changed. We have defined our most essential features, and it is here that the developers need to put their focus.
This change also means, that we are not far from having the first test version!
I am really looking forward to it, and hope you are too 😉

Thanks for reading and have a wonderful day

Regards
Flemming

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