Why UX? Why now?

When you hear concepts over and over, you often wonder is it because it’s swarming or because your ear is newly attuned to it? Did you know there’s a lot of people who believe that the #11 has super powers and that’s why when they look at the clock, it’s always 11 after? Seriously.
UX is hip. And rightly so. I thought I’d share a theory why this is so and what impact it might have on your startup. This despite the fact that I’m relatively new to UX concepts.

Crossing the Lean Startup Chasm

As an early believer in Lean Startup movement, I can perhaps be excused for my unbridled enthusiasm for the release of Eric Ries’ new book, The Lean Startup: How Today’s Entrepreneurs Use Continuous Innovation to Create Radically Successful Businesses. Not however, for the reasons you might expect.
In fact, some early adopters of Lean Startups — those who have already bought into the framework to the extent that they’ve applied its practices into their high tech startup — might be a tad disappointed. They might have to look a little deeper; there’s no vanity steps to success herein.

Lean Startup Book Cover

Lean Startup Book Cover

Here’s what I submitted to Eric Ries as an idea for the cover of his upcoming book: For some reason, it didn’t get chosen.  : )  Actually, it’s a just slide from my You are (not) a Visionary deck I presented at last week’s Wisconsin’s...

Fire Yourself

During the next week of reflection, a non-early adopter, but loyal user of the product called the founder to announce that he would not after all, pay for the product. Not at the proposed price, not at the price they had argued for, not at any price.
So he fired himself as Founder and CEO of his company. And then he fired me. (“I no longer need your services. But in the future…”)
We talked briefly about his future, including possible pivots and leaps, but essentially, the gig was up. I admire his self-awareness and the honesty with which he evaluated his situation.

You Can't "Feature" Your Way to Success

Despite Dave McClure’s imploring to “kill a feature” and Eric Ries’ urging to “cut your product in half, then halve it again,” most startup founders I encounter are trying to work their way toward Product-Market fit by planning and building new features. The analytical mind of an entrepreneur, both engineer and business-side, naturally tends toward solving problems and ostensibly, features solve problems. But it’s the wrong approach for most startups.