Pre-Exercise: Think for a Moment
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Pre-Exercise: Think for a Moment. If you wanted to create a service to help families reduce the cost of putting food on the table, what could you do? How would you test if your idea makes sense?. Ideation: Prototyping and Assessment. Grow What Works and Save Time and Effort.

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Pre-Exercise: Think for a Moment

  • If you wanted to create a service to help families reduce the cost of putting food on the table, what could you do?

  • How would you test if your idea makes sense?

Ideation: Prototyping and Assessment

Grow What Works and Save Time and Effort

Creation is messy. Test it first.

  • Our own narrative of Creation is full of prototypes.

  • Even the Creator, in omnipotence, tested out creation first.

  • Before creating Humans, the creator made animals; before animals, fish and birds.

  • And before moving on, the key is to see: Is it good?

Prototyping helps make sure you get the outcome you want while wasting the least resources.

Prototypes help pivoting
Prototypes help pivoting

  • Before man and woman were created, there was Human.

  • Human was the minimum set of activities the Creator needed to undertake to test the model.

  • And after assessment, it was found to be Good.

  • Human worked, but missed something, so the Creator pivoted, and separated the two to Man and Woman.

Prototyping and assessment go hand-in-hand.

You can’t do one without the other.

What is a prototype
What is a Prototype?

A prototype is the smallest feasible application of your ventures’ intended activities to create a product that presents value to your chosen target market.

People don’t buy products, they buy the opportunity to experience what the product has to offer; a prototype simulates the experience without developing the full product.

How do you build a prototype
How do you build a prototype?

  • Every venture can be prototyped.

  • Key question: what is the key driver of value to my target customer.

  • Next key question: what is the best way for me to test if the activity I am proposing will really provide value.

  • Then, gather a sample of your target market, and test.

  • Make sure to speak with them before (to set a baseline) and after, to learn if your assumptions of value creation were true.

Example Prototype: Food on the Table

  • Service proposed would provide consumers a way to save money by matching their menus with coupons

  • Product would be FOTT webservice to push coupons and menu options to consumers

  • Prototyped by collecting coupons by hand from local groceries and finding menu options for them, and selling them to local customers

  • Through test, learned how the FOTT service could be automated and grown

Credit to Eric Ries for the introduction to this brilliant venture

Workshop imagine a prototype
Workshop: Imagine a Prototype

  • In groups of three, first describe your core activity that produces value

  • Chose one venture in the group to prototype first

  • Imagine ways to test whether the venture actually provides value

  • Write down all of the assumptions (of activities, customer, product offering) you make along the way

  • If you have time, do it for another venture

How can you test your assumptions
How can you test your assumptions?

  • Assessment is never easy, so build in time for it.

  • Two main ways to assess: Quantitative and Qualitative.

  • Before starting, determine how you measure. These are your metrics.

  • Always set a baseline for assessment with a pre-experience Intake survey, and see difference with an Exit survey.

  • Test for core assumptions – but don’t ask too many questions or you’ll lose your market.

Always Assess! Cycle through: Plan, Intake, Act, Exit, Assess, Pivot, Plan, Intake, Act…etc

Power of quantitative measures
Power of Quantitative Measures

As much as possible, use quantitative metrics – they will help assess whether the needle really moved

Workshop build in an assessment
Workshop: Build in an Assessment

  • In groups of three, review how your prototype works

  • Chose one venture in the group to build an assessment plan for the prototype

  • What are you assessing? Self-interview for qualitative indicators, and pick three possible metrics

  • Describe what actions you’ll take to know whether your venture is hitting its mark

  • If you have time, repeat with another venture.

Let s see some of this in action
Let’s see some of this in action

TED Marshmallow Tower

Prototypes always lead to good
Prototypes Always Lead to Good

  • Sometimes you try things and they don’t work out. Like Noah’s generation. But one learns, and tries again.

  • Key is not to fail too big; think small.

  • Even the One who knows Everything needs to test and test again. Don’t be embarrassed to try and fail.

  • Pay attention to your metrics. They will be your best teachers.

  • The key to a successful venture is an openness to learning.