(2010-02-28) Rao Blank Ries

Venkatesh Rao turns the Customer Development/Lean Startup thinking of Steve Blank and Eric Ries into a self-assessment for your Start Up and your life. Interesting gloss. Blank, a veteran serial-entrepreneur, doesn’t actually set out to grill you, like a brutal VC, till you sweat. It just naturally happens... Since I can’t possibly “review” the book, let me try to turn the whole Lean Startup conversation, anchored by this (Steve's) book, into a self-administered inquisition. For the two entrepreneurial ventures I am currently leading, I score a B+ (for ribbonfarm.com) and a B- (for trailmeme.com). So here’s the test, a round-up of the lean startup conversation, and a micro-riff on applying this to your life (Lifestyle Design), since --(planning)-- improvising a life seems to have become an exercise in entrepreneurship in this century... If you feel like your life is currently consumed by a project with deep uncertainties, yet feel driven to continue by some unclear force deep down, you are probably an Entrepreneur of some sort.

Your epiphany about “what I want to do with my life” while hiking in the mountains, is only half the story. The other half is what the market wants to do with you. If you can’t trigger an Aha! moment in someone outside of yourself, you don’t have a career. (Making A Living as Product Market Fit)

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