It’s not rocket science: all businesses MUST engage with customers. Engage or die has long been a motto of ours. There are many ways to engage, but there are always two primary objectives to all techniques:
1. Learn. Your job is not to be faithful to your product, value, and market assumptions, but rather to validate (or invalidate) them so you are able to iterate toward reality. #survivalofthefittest
2. Don’t waste. Don’t waste time filling out worksheets, creating additional work, or trying to improve interview efficacy with old techniques. Figure out what you need to learn to move the needle in your business and leave the rest.
We’ll shoot one notable example your way: A Toyota Chief drove throughout North America in a minivan in order to experience what American and Canadian drivers experienced in their daily lives. Creative customer development by the world’s largest automobile manufacturer. They can go lean, so can you.
How Lean are You?
Brant Cooper and Patrick Vlaskovits, the authors of the much anticipated book, The Lean Entrepreneur are all about trimming the fat from startups. Their book is an iterative, customer-centric business development approach in the face of market uncertainty. If you haven’t read it, you should. Or else you’ll have that sinking feeling you just got left behind.
#GROWtalks is a new conference hitting the road throughout various regions of North America bringing Brant and other thought-leaders to your neighborhood to lend their inspirations, their stories, their failures and their expertise to you. How does one relate to the other?
If you purchase a copy of The Lean Entrepreneur by February 26th, you have a chance to win a pass to all GROW events in 2013 put on by Dealmaker Media, plus the private speaker events. Enter the giveaway now before it’s too late. Also, buy some copies for your friends to increase your chances! (did we mention access to ALL GROW events?)
*This article was written in collaboration with Casey Armstrong, Partner at WebbROI