Course 2 Failure Day Supplementary Reading
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Course 2 Failure Day Supplementary Reading






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  • Charleston Digital Corridor 05/27/11
  • Charleston Digital Corridor 05/27/11

Course 2 Failure Day Supplementary Reading Presentation Transcript

  • 1. De-Pe Failure Day
  • 2. Overview of failure
    • Succeed and failure are not mutually exclusive
    • Often what seems like an overnight success, can be attributed
      • years of hard work
      • persistence
      • learning from mistakes and failures.
  • 3. Failure in Chile
    • Chilean culture harshly punishes failure in general.
    • It is difficult to be an entrepreneur in a society that punishes failure.
  • 4. The Truth
    • Most successful startups / people had failures at one time.
    • Failure is important learning process .
    • The ability to accept failure is an important characteristic of entrepreneurs.
  • 5. How to Deal with Failure (1/3)
    • Failure IS NOT FINAL
      • Failure isn’t permanent or a part of you
      • Look at mistakes, as outcomes or results , NOT as permanent and personal
    • “ People don’t Fail, it is the Plan, Strategies and Tactics that Fail.”
    • - Paul Mc.Kenna
  • 6. How to Deal with Failure (2/3)
    • Take responsibility for failure and Learn a lesson from it
      • After a failure most people want to forget or hide their failure in shame.
      • It’s even easier to just blame failure on someone.
      • Important to analyze and learn from your mistakes even if its hard.
    • “ I have not Failed, I have learnt 9,999 ways that won’t work.” - Thomas Edison
  • 7. How to Deal with Failure (3/3)
    • Failure can lead to good things
      • Even after a failure many entrepreneurs find that skill they learn + contacts or collaborators they worked with on their startup end up being a huge value in their next venture
    • Malcolm Forbes put it, "Failure is success if we learn from it."
  • 8. How to Guarantee Failure
    • The worst way to fail is to not start!
    • The #1 problem people have is they just don’t do it
    • Actually starting a startup is very different than learning about startups.
    • You can read about something 100 times but if you make a mistake with your own time and money involved there is NO WAY you will forget those lessons
    • Experience trumps book learning
  • 9. Why Startups Fail (1/3)
    • Startups fail from unproven assumptions. Josh Kopelman: “What’s the bet?”
    • Identify key assumptions
    • Spend as little money as you can to prove your assumptions
    • Go out side of the building to find your answer
  • 10. MANDATORY Question
    • List some of the major assumptions for your business idea.
        • Hint: A big assumption most companies make is that people will care about / pay for their products!
    Please answer this question at
  • 11. Why Startups Fail (2/3)
    • More startups fail from a lack of customers than from a failure of product development.
      • Nobody knows what the market really needs.
      • You have to push your product out in order to better listen and learn from the market.
      • Start selling now! You do not need to have a company to sell new ideas to customers.
      • This class focuses on using customer discovery process to create products that fit with the market.
  • 12. Why Startups Fail (3/3)
    • Mike Maples: “You Have to Be Willing to Throw it all away”.
      • Investing a months of time in an idea, it’s hard to let it go and move on to the next one.
      • Better to push a minimal viable product out and validate your idea quickly – we’ll show you how to do this
  • 13. Failure leading to new businesses models
    • Pivot is changing your business model (not just iterating on your product)
      • It’s the equivalent of taking a hit (no product traction) and spinning (product pivot) to find another path to the goal (product market fit).
  • 14. Product pivot
    • Stop fretting about your idea.
      • Flickr was a game.
      • Twittr was group SMS.
      • Youtube was a dating site.
      • Majority of companies end up with different ideas than they started with!
    • Build. Ship. Pivot. Repeat.
  • 15. Other types of pivots
    • Vudu – distribution model pivot
      • Went from selling hardware boxes (only a few thousand sold after $30m in investment to embedding their software int TV sets and DVD players)
    • Ngmoco – pricing pivot
      • Went from selling $40 games on iPhone to $2 games
  • 16. Pivot versus Iterate
    • Red laser (Iterate)
      • Showed grandma how easy this new app and it turned out it was completely foreign to her; she just had no idea how to use it!
      • Still believe in product and market, iterate to make it better
    • Invite Media (Pivot)
      • No traction with online video, hit a wall, switched to advertising exchange
      • Grew to $100m valutation in 2 years after pivot
  • 17. MANDATORY Discussion
    • Give an example of a company that pivoted.
    Please answer this question at
  • 18.
    • Questions?
  • 19.
    • Thank You