Tweet: Why i think we can do better than lean startup method.

 

The concept of lean startup provides a process framework for creation of companies. It takes agile development model and apply it into startup domain in which the process gets primacy over scattered thoughts and contextual intelligence. 

Its a goal oriented action which focus on feedback loop through experimentation, MVP, customer development etc.

While i think this framework has some inherent value, there are also some potential drawbacks. Following are some of them that comes to mind: 

  1. Lean method gives preference to process than contextual intelligence to gain intelligence from the context(paradoxical). Using a process oriented causal logic in a domain(entrepreneurship) were no variables are known and everything is a bunch of unknowns may constraint potentially rewarding actions. 
  2. Framing effect and consolidation of conceptual models related to the lean method may limit the cognitive diversity of participants. Thoughts are limited by frames. 
  3. Against the User Innovation Model which worked perfectly for may successful companies like Facebook and Dropbox. User innovation refers to innovation by users rather than by suppliers (producers or manufacturers).  According to Eric von Hippel of MIT Sloan User Innovation contribute a lot more innovations than we give it credit for.
  4. Not optimized for serendipity and luck. 
  5. Andrea Contigiani, a researcher at the Mack Institute for Innovation Management studies Lean method and suggest that the effectiveness of lean startup depends on “boundary conditions.” According to him, there could be situations where going lean is optimal, and other situations where it’s not, and maybe in those situations if you want to go lean you have to also take some other strategies to make that work. And so I wanted to try to understand those boundary conditions.

  6. According to Andrea Contigiani,  the potential likelihood of intellectual property related issues like, competitors stealing the product idea or adapting to the gap could also happen in case of publicized experimentation which is one of the central theme of lean method. 

 

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