Where are my Hypotheses Eric?
I have a problem with the “Build Measure Learn” Lean Startup Wheel.
I really do. This Build Measure Learn thing let entrepreneurs and product managers think that the exploration process starts with the build phase. Which is damn wrong. And i’ll explain why.
Look at few years back, the Lean Startup wheel looked a lot like the Deming wheel (Plan>DO>Check>Act) :
Look at what it is now :
I understand the importance of marketing in the movement, and I’m the first one supporting it. It’s pretty cool to see more and more teams and startups trying to apply the Lean Startup principles. It’s good for the ecosystem, and it’s also good for the people working in those teams (but it’s another article I guess). And seriously thank you Eric to be the head of this.
But still, I have a problem. I loved the first version of the wheel you showed to the world few years back.
It was clearly explaining that there were ideas, and that those ideas were hypotheses. And that you needed to check them fast.
I encounter more and more people forgetting that everything you do are hypotheses, and building a product doesn’t start by building the product. Build is an awesome word, but simultaneously a dangerous word.
The dangerous part is not understanding that “build” actually means “do an hypothesis, plan how you’re going to (in)validate it and how you’re going to measure it’s success, and do it”. That is, for me, what is behind the Deming’s “plan”, and behind the old Lean Startup Wheel “Idea”. I’m going to repeat it, like a mantra for myself : "build" actually means “do an hypothesis, plan how you’re going to (in)validate it and how you’re going to measure it’s success and do it”.
And this is damn important.
That is also why I’m building Experiments.IO. In this Lean Startup process manager tool, everything starts with hypotheses. And that’s how it should always be.
Shout out if you liked the first version more!