5 Things I Learned from Lean StartUp

I try to read 1 book per week.

Sometimes I do more and sometimes less, but 1 a week is about my average. 

Last week I read Lean Startup by Eric Ries. 

After reading the last word, I knew this could be a life changer and be included in my top 5 all time list. 

It teaches a scientific approach to creating value by building something new. The book is aimed at startups but building something new to me is literally everything in life. To me it's creating a new habit, new relationships, new goals etc. That got me excited to try to apply these principles into as many areas as I can! My gears are already spinning >:).


In the meantime, I want to share 5 things I learned from Lean Startup:

1. What you work on is more important that how you work on it

This is something I learned previously from Tim Ferris, but Eric Ries teaches you this by giving you a method to got to what is important. The method sticks with you since it's actionable. 

2. The only useful metrics are actionable ones

This is something I've been guilty of not doing. Once I get a data set I'm quick to do summary statistics and point to metrics that I don't know how they came to be or the next steps. This teaches you discipline to stick to that can drive action.

3. Realize your engine of growth and the metric appropriate to it

Once you know that the only useful metrics are actionable ones, it's useful to limit to what actions are going to be the most effective. To do that you identify what is your company's engine of growth. If you're company grows according to retention, then do cohort analysis to measure churn. If vitality is what makes you grow, look to grow your viral coefficient. 

4. Work in small batches

I thought I was so smart working in large batches- didn't anyone notice that this was the quickest way? Well I was wrong! There are two reasons why working in small batches is better: first, it is actually quicker and second, you can catch errors before you invest too much time to one particular part of the process. 

5. The 5 Why's

Every time you run into a problem, take time to find the root of it. Technical problem? Bring all the people involved and keep asking why until you reach a point that you set up a system to avoid that problem all together. For the most part, it is never a person's fault but a system that isn't appropriate to the situation. So ask the 5 why's to get to that system. the 5 Why's are also how companies create unique cultures and systems, so lean into the 5 Why's!