Chapter 10

Early Market Engagement: Business Concept Options1

In this chapter, we focus on how the Learning Plan is applied in practice. This is difficult to make real on paper because it comes down to situational learning. You need to do it to experience it. The next best alternative is to share the experiences of others. Of course, we continue to carry through our mantra of “learning per dollars spent,” which I hope has been ingrained in you by now.

Steve Pierson adds one more mantra, “good enough,” and other insights based on his experiences.

It is not about being perfect. It is better for us to have a working prototype, which allows for early learning and experimentation, than to strive for perfection in the Incubation phase. We often used the mantra “It's good enough” when making decisions to move forward with our ideas, concepts, and prototypes.

Fail fast and fail often. Admit failures and move on. Do not blame, but look for learning opportunities from these failures. Failing often and early will improve our chances of success in the long run. While we could have learned much more by running multiple concurrent projects, our platform was constrained by resources and funding. We worked with the capacity we had and the mind-set of “good enough,” and we accomplished a lot.

You can't manage what you don't measure. Partners are very important in accelerating our market learning and improving the “learning per dollar spent” metric. Partnerships are essential to fill our competency ...

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