Ramli John wrote a relatively simple but important post recently addressing an often misconstrued concept coming out of the Lean Startup camp – the MVP (minimum viable product). He posits “the MVP is NOT about the product”, that most startups falter in this process by losing sight of the true purpose of an MVP – to provide validated learning. And a testable hypothesis statement is the foundation upon which this learning can take place.
We’ve been a part of this process with MusicBox as of late, and I can attest to how easy it can be to forget the reason an MVP exists. You get so hyper-focused and excited about building your vision and you become so invested in your baby that customer feedback and “moving fast and breaking things” take a backseat to UI and design. You should view your MVP as a customer development tool, not a finished product (click to Tweet).
Bill Aulet notes: “As soon as we build something, we all tend to move increasingly from inquiry mode to advocacy mode at the very time where the former is needed and the latter can blind us.” And here’s what Dropbox’s founder shared about its MVP process: