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Eric Ries and The Lean Startup – It’s Everywhere

by Ryan Martens, 3 November 2011 | The Agile Blogosphere

This content is syndicated from Agile Development Blog: Scaling Software Agility by Ryan Martens. To view the original post in full, click here.

With the publishing of Eric Ries’ book, The Lean Startup, I can barely go a day without talking to someone about it. Eric clearly executed a lean startup on himself and this topic – by focusing on learning. Eric started much of his work a couple of years ago with his blog Startup Lessons Learned and by publicly speaking on the topic. I saw him first at Return Path, a local Rally customer, in May of 2010.  Since that time, he has continued to refine the principles and collected great stories for this book that speaks equally well to an new entrepreneur as a seasoned business professional. The book is just a fantastic and hard-hitting summary of this approach to business, as well as a manual on how to teach entrepreneurial behaviors.  If Eric was a seasoned author, this would be a great book, but given the fact it is his first effort – it makes the book astonishing.  It debuted at #2 on New York Times Bestseller list! If you do not know Eric or The Lean Startup model, it works by developing product/service in parallel with the customer in a market.  The method can be summarized by three words executed repeatedly; Build, Measure, Learn.  These cycles continue to help you assess whether to stay the course, pivot or stop.  The Lean Startup is a combination of applying Agile Development, and Customer Development methods, but draws on Lean, crowd sourcing/social and complexity to create a true collection of thinking and acting tools for today’s complex world. Eric’s sub title really sums the book up well –
How Today’s Entrepreneurs Use Continuous Innovation to Create Radically Successful Businesses
… as these ideas and thinking apply equally as well for venture-backed tech startup, impact investing, social startups or internally funded intrapreneuring efforts.  If you read his blog, you will see he A/B tested about 20 sub-titles to come to this one. So, not only is a great sub-title, but it is one that attracts the right market.

Have you clicked on the book image to buy it yet?  No?  Let me try one more thing!

For Agile teams, programs or enterprises, the message from this book should be clear: you need to start applying customer development approaches to the front-end of your Agile efforts. You can read about Rally’s latest customer development in the Making of Project Stratus; and you can see the results of these efforts at our Agile Portfolio Management launch in December. As part of this launch effort, Zach Nies and I have been given a great gift in the last month of continuous lean startup (more on that in later posts). Last week, I found out that Zach and I will have the opportunity to interview Eric live on February 2nd.  If you don’t buy the book, you should at least register for the 1 hour video event.

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