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Founders - why we do what we do - and why this sucks.


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Startup Founders are awesome.
They are visionary, convincing and ambitious. Let me explain why this sucks.

Published in: Business

Founders - why we do what we do - and why this sucks.

  1. 1. FOUNDERS Why we do what we doflickr: pictureperfectpose #howtoweb – @andreasklinger
  2. 2. @andreasklinger#howtowebslides:
  3. 3. INVESTORS Carmen Busquets Dave McClure Eden Ventures Sherry Coutu Tom Hulme Seedcamp 500 Startups LOOKK Social Discovery &Shopping of emerging Fashion Designers.
  4. 4. NOT HERE TO PITCHI am “in-between startups”Time to reflect… #howtoweb – @andreasklinger
  5. 5. STARTUPS ARE AWESOMEflickr: an_untrained_eye #howtoweb – @andreasklinger
  6. 6. IT’S THE BEST TIME EVER TO START A WEB STARTUP This is an industrial revolution. “Software eats the world…” ~ Marc Andreessenfoto: wired #howtoweb – @andreasklinger
  7. 7. (YOU) FOUNDERS ARE AWESOME. VISIONARY CONVINCING AMBITIOUSflickr: stuckincustoms #howtoweb – @andreasklinger
  8. 8. FOUNDERS ARE VISIONARYflickr: spengben #howtoweb – @andreasklinger
  9. 9. BuildTheEnterprise.orgwants to build a real spaceship‘Gen-1 Enterprise’Project Plan: 20 years, $1 trillionCRAZY?VISIONARY?STUPID?
  10. 10. LOOKK in 2009.(Back then we were called Garmz)Bird-eye view ofour processes.3 Meters longFlowchart.“Start your own fashionlabel. You design. We dothe rest.”CRAZY?VISIONARY?STUPID?
  11. 11. fanbase crowd- proto- pre- prod- logisticsbuilding sourcing typing ordering uctionFirst Launch!We started right with the big vision.An unique business model torevolutionise a whole industry.
  12. 12. fanbase crowd- proto- pre- prod- logisticsbuilding sourcing typing ordering uctionWe didn’t know if these parts willactually catch ground.But linked them together.Pivot nightmare.
  13. 13. fanbase crowd- proto- pre- prod- logisticsbuilding sourcing typing ordering uctionOur competitor. Just preordering.Same press. Same VC interest.Same learnings. Faster iterations.
  15. 15. FOUNDERS ARE CONVINCINGflickr: stephenpoff #howtoweb – @andreasklinger
  16. 16. We don’t know our business/product yet… But we tell our customers they need it… And they believe it…flickr: good_day #howtoweb – @andreasklinger
  17. 17. “A startup is an organisation formed to search for a repeatable and scalable business model.” ~ Steve Blankfoto: startupbootcamp #howtoweb – @andreasklinger
  18. 18. “Startups don’t fail because they lack a product; they fail because they lack customers and a profitable business model” ~ Steve Blank (yes i am a s_blank fanboy)foto: LEAN LA #howtoweb – @andreasklinger
  19. 19. Still… Instead of asking we try to good_day #howtoweb – @andreasklinger
  20. 20. “Ask your customers!”
  21. 21. “Ask your customers!”Meh.
  22. 22. We ask our customers!But their feedback sucks.It’s vague & imprecise…They don’t do what they tell…And opinions…So many opinions…
  23. 23. Even if we don’t pitch.We are asking the wrong way.We want to build solution Y?What do you think?Would you use it?Would you pay for it?VSTell me about your day.Tell me about X?So X is a problem?How do you solve X now?How much you pay for that?
  24. 24. We are biasing &misunderstanding them…Plus we don’t ask theuncomfortable questions…Please watch Rob’s Talk:
  25. 25. This was us followinghis methods…Turns out… We had no idea.Pink = assumptionsYellow = new learned facts <- Sea of Sorrow aka Invalidated Assumptions
  26. 26. FOUNDERS ARE AMBITIOUSflickr: neilarmstrong2 #howtoweb – @andreasklinger
  27. 27. We all want thisflickr: stuckincustoms #howtoweb – @andreasklinger
  28. 28. Achieve Achieve Problem / Solution Fit Product / Market Fit Discover Validate Efficiency Growth We all get this. Source: custdev.comflickr: stuckincustoms #howtoweb – @andreasklinger
  29. 29. All phases of company building have different key challenges. #1 Reason of startup failure: Believing you are further along. “Pre-mature scaling” Source: startupgenome projectflickr: stuckincustoms #howtoweb – @andreasklinger
  30. 30. We all want to scale! Hollywood style! #1 Question i hear: “How do i get funding for tech & do marketing?”flickr: neilarmstrong2 #howtoweb – @andreasklinger
  31. 31. No Press nor VC is going to tell you this… Building an non-working company is as hard as building a working one. (then the non-working one dies) You can will be busy “scaling” without any product worth bombeador #howtoweb – @andreasklinger
  32. 32. VCs have no friggin’ idea. Never ask a VC what you should do. They don’t know. Your customers know (look at your Only the good VCs will admit that. Bad VCs will give vagueness + bombeador #howtoweb – @andreasklinger
  33. 33. Investors are under more pressure than you. 9/10 startups fail. Startup follow a power law distribution . What about VCs? Accelerators? Local investors? They need to proof more than you do. Many are startups too, but play nasamarshall #howtoweb – @andreasklinger
  34. 34. No VC will tell you. Getting money is “easy”. Getting traction _hard_ Focus on the right things while your learning is jdhancock #howtoweb – @andreasklinger
  35. 35. “My goal [..] is to keepthe business low overhead, until we have somethingthat I feel is a breakout hit” ~Justin Kan, Exec foto: wikipedia #howtoweb – @andreasklinger
  36. 36. Founders! Your biggest Just avoid the moststrength is that you are common mistakes invisionary, convincing being so.and eole #howtoweb – @andreasklinger
  37. 37. Thanks! Feedback & Questions please. #howtoweb – @andreasklingerflickr: pictureperfectpose