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Great products and services are born out of trial and error. Only with iteration will a company get the feedback it needs to inch closer and closer to a product that best meets customer needs. [Read More]

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Great products and services are born out of trial and error. Only with iteration will a company get the feedback it needs to inch closer and closer to a product that best meets customer needs. [Read More]

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Justin

The concept of iteration is actually quite old. More than 20 years ago, Fred Brooks wrote the very readable and seminal book The Mythical Man Month and one of the things he proposes is to build a "throwaway prototype", a quick and simple version 1 which quickly leads into a version 2 built from scratch (or close to it).

Until this day, too many companies attempt to launch complex new projects with a big bang approach. "We need ALL these features in version 1 and it has to work, scale, be extensible, etc ,etc" and what they often get instead is a big, expensive, and late failure.

The idea put forth by Brooks is that we can never get the first version right, no matter how sure we are of the requirements if it has never been done before. That it is important to build a proof of concept prototype to check and see if the requirements and assumptions have been correct before building the "big one".

Gregory Kennedy

I couldn't agree more with the comment above. Starting small and building features into your product - after you see how users respond is absolutely the best way to design anything. Designer can rarely anticipate all of the features and needs of users.

Gregory Kennedy

I couldn't agree more with the comment above. Starting small and building features into your product - after you see how users respond is absolutely the best way to design anything. Designer can rarely anticipate all of the features and needs of users.

Dan Cornish

I sure wish more investors and Venture Guys understood this. Rapid innovation can not be put into a business plan. The impatient nature of investors is the enemy of interation. Can someone explain to me how you can put in a business plan how you plan to fail faster than anyone else. Microsoft can just keep plugging away until it gets it right, yet countless companies have had the plug pulled because they need to plug away and the investors/board/venture capital has a shorter time frame.

Imagine is Tom Watson had to deal with the short attention span that a lot of Venture guys are so proud of?

Marc H. Nathan

I just got around to reading this last comment, and the more I think about it, the more upset I get. Most professional investors are not impatient per se, they simply want the entrepreneur to execute the plan that sold them on the deal in the first place. If the plans are realistic, and match the abilities of the founders with the present market, then there shouldn't be a timing problem. I believe that investors should give their deals enough time to learn and grow, but not coddle them either. All entrepreneurs, by definition, fall in love with their own deals - and this alone makes the relationship with investors difficult from their perspective. From an investors perspective, the deal will always have unforseen problems, which is why they have to think about protecting their money, and not drink the kool-aid, as so many entrepreneurs do all too often.

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