Lean Forward – It’s Not Just for Startups

By Posted in Events, New Relic News, Top Post 29 November 2012

The Lean Startup Conference logoNow that Thanksgiving is behind us, it’s time to get Lean! Next week, the Lean Startup Conference comes to San Francisco and New Relic will be there as a sponsor. We hope you can make it too, because everyone can benefit from becoming a little more lean.

When people hear “startup,” they tend to think of two or three entrepreneurs huddled in a Palo Alto garage — and there’s often a misconception that the strategies they employ to achieve success don’t apply to larger or more established organizations. Yet, the principles outlined by Eric Ries in his book The Lean Startup offer important insights for anyone in the business of creating new products or services.

The crux of the lean approach is increasing efficiency. It’s hard to imagine any company — whether a fledgling startup or multi-national enterprise — deciding that’s not essential to its long-term success. Cutting development time and costs, and reducing operational waste are likely viewed as ongoing goals for your organization or product team. And that’s probably not going to change even as your business evolves. But what specifically drives these continuous improvements for lean startups is data (w00t!) — a steady stream of data about both the product and its potential customers. That’s how you figure out what’s working and what’s not for fast, incremental gains.

Traditionally, larger companies tend to favor a waterfall approach that doesn’t yield meaningful customer feedback until the product is released. But accelerating this feedback loop is the best way to minimize uncertainty about customer needs and how they can be addressed with new product features and enhancements. It also provides more clarity around difficult decisions to either pivot if a given direction isn’t yielding expected results, or to forge ahead. The point being: Failure is OK. It’s informative and it’s productive —you just want to make sure you’re failing fast and failing cheap. And that’s true regardless of budget, number of employees or square footage.

So whether you’re just starting out with ideas scrawled in a notebook or you’re leading a large team for a massive product launch, Lean Startup practices are designed to help you move faster and better understand your customers along the way. You can find out more on Eric’s site, theleanstartup.com

Don’t forget to stop by out booth at the conference and ask us about our own lean origins, watch a demo, meet our team, and pick up your free Data Nerd t-shirt. Lean Startup Conference attendees can try New Relic Pro free for 30 days*. Claim your free account today by going to newrelic.com/learnstartup and typing leanstartup30 in the promo code field.

See you at the show!

* Offer available for new customers only.

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