I’ve made a point of listening to The Lean Startup by Eric Ries again. I listen and reread books because I find that with the advancement of my thoughts, the context is different, so the content is different.

What something meant to me a year ago can sometimes be drastically different today.

That being said, the book isn’t drastically different but it certainly adds to the point that my first book was an iteration. I never really saw it that way, but I do now. I also see that with each change of my personal development that lead into CADs Academy, they were pivots because I wasn’t getting or I was misunderstanding the feedback loop I was creating.

If you haven’t read the book, Eric tells us that a minimal viable product is the least amount of effort required to create a product and use it to test the market. Each iteration provides answers to questions, which means that an MVP is meant to answer questions.

The ultimate goal is to find the product that people want and a way to get it to them. Only when you’ve done this and have a way of receiving payment do you have a business. This as it is would mean that my published book is a business, but a poor one at that.

I’ve sold enough books to make up my losses.

But I stopped there. I pivoted away from the book because I saw it as a failure. I didn’t even see it as a product, because it was meant to be a part of a larger picture. The problem here is that I never tested whether this “bigger picture” is something that people wanted.

I bounced around so much trying new things (creating MVPs), but I never knew what questions I was answering with them. I didn’t have a proper feedback loop so it was hard to, Build, Measure, Learn.

I did a lot of building and no measuring. I learned, but I learned a bunch of random things instead of what I wanted to learn.

This tricked me into thinking that I was headed in the right direction because as an entrepreneur I was learning and creating. I thought I had never found “The right product” and that was the problem, but THAT was the problem.

There isn’t really “the right product”, so much as there is a series of MVPs that lead to the product that people want. The stories that Eric tells are of larger companies that we know like Apple who had poor iterations of their current products but these limited MVPs gave them the opportunity to answer questions and put their theories to the test.

The market ate the MVP and so they created the next version. They added. They changed. They built.  They answered more questions and learned more. But that learning was guided.

Outside of the MVP, I’ve been learning a lot about myself and how I create. What I care about and what might be a way I can manage my success. I wrote a number of success management tips with sources yesterday and they stand very true to how I see things right now. A part of those management tips is the need to build onto my craft.

This is the reason why I’m writing this post, because I want to learn how to better think and write. I’m hoping to get 1 post out every day, even if it’s just a small thought. Think Seth Godin’s blog if you might.

Christopher Doiron

Christopher Doiron is the founder of CADs Academy, an online school that focuses on expanding your mind through contextual learning. He is also responsible for the creation of SocialMarketplace.ca and has authored two books which are available on Amazon.

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