Like most entrepreneurs who are exposed to the thoughts of Steve Blank, Alexander Osterwalder and the lean movement you see the value of building your Business Model Canvas. Simple as it may sound, plan-on-a-page, it shows only the tip of the iceberg when it comes to actually pulling off on the actions you list. The core of the idea is validation of assumptions as quickly and as definitively as you can. Earlier this month I wrote about asking the right questions to yourself about your business and your plan.
All the approaches, marked above has one core commonality. Validating your assumptions. Talk to actual prospects (folks you think will be your ideal customers) and ask them (a) if they actually have a need for what you think their problems are and (b) if and how much they are willing to pay for the solution. You can show them mockups or at best MVP’s to get more refined feedbacks. But getting the feedback and refining your product and approach is critical.
Rohit Sen, CEO of NIRA, a personal credit service and Techstars Bangalore alumni (2019 batch) wrote a piece in LinkedIn a few weeks back about a system about learnings from speed meeting 60 mentors ( Techstars runs a program within their accelerator program “Mentor Madness” and this was scheduled within that initiative. His learnings as articulated in the article has two key takeaways :
- Customer First – “ but did I really know who my customers are? Do I really understand their daily lives, their struggles, their aspirations, and their contexts? …How will I uncover the unique insights that will set us apart from the other players in my market? “ writes Rohit.
- Test What you don’t know – This is classic Business Model Canvas advice.”I was repeatedly challenged on various facets of our plan. Sure, our ideas sounded plausible, but how good were they? How are we ranking them? Why are we placing confidence in these ideas?” elaborates Rohit.
These are candid real founder feedback on validating your assumptions and knowing your customers (these are intrinsically linked) from one of the most celebrated accelerators globally, TechStars. Free lessons you can learn and apply as you build your plan.
Article by Rohit Sen : What I Learnt From Meeting 60 Mentors in 2 Weeks https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/what-i-learnt-from-meeting-60-mentors-2-weeks-rohit-sen/