The Startup Owner's Manual: The Step-By-Step Guide for Building a Great Company

Author: Steve Blank, Steven Gary Blank, Bob Dorf
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by hazz99   2020-05-05
I highly recommend reading about the business model canvas (definitely get this book [1]) and the "double diamond" framework [2] in design thinking. I'd also recommending reading some Steve Blank [3] for the "mainstream" understanding of "startup business".

The Lean Startup [4] is often recommended, but I've been told it's extremely beginner-level (though I haven't read it, so my analysis might be unfair)

If you want to get really in-depth, there's a lot of really great interplay between the design discipline and entrepreneurship that is often overlooked. "Design Thinking" is much more than a buzzword, check it out.




by mindcrime   2019-05-26
Try this:



and this:

by mindcrime   2019-05-06


by gjkood   2018-11-10
Just for context for those who don't know who Steve Blank is, he is the author of two books that I admire the most in my journey starting up my own venture.

The story here gives the origin of one his most critical 'Epiphanies'... "Get out of the building".

"The Four Steps to the Epiphany" [1] and "The Startup Owner's Manual" [2]



by tga   2017-12-06
Superseded by The Startup Owner's Manual: The Step-By-Step Guide for Building a Great Company, also by Steve Blank.

by davidw   2017-08-19
Lean Startup fell pretty flat for me. It felt like there wasn't much "there there". Recommended alternatives:

Read it, liked it more than Lean Startup:

Started reading it, seems much more thorough than Lean Startup: - annoyingly does not have a Kindle version.

Haven't ready it, heard it's good:

And of course, my favorite of all, because it's full of real, practical advice, Start Small, Stay Small.

by 27182818284   2017-08-19
>Your long memory is, IMO, working against you here.

What you wrote and what I wrote I don't think conflict at all, so I don't know why you'd say it is working against me. Also I have found references to what I wrote in writing[0] so I'm not completely crazy.

Now, an anecdote that I might screw up because my memory is fuzzy about it, is that the founder of Instacart was given a copy of Webvan's business plan on a floppy as a sort of "Good luck!" token.


by hansef   2017-08-19
Like "agile", "lean startup" can mean pretty much... anything the person using the phrase wants it to mean.

With agile, sometimes the word is used to justify a rigid excess of ceremony, or as a firewall for lazy developers to hide behind to avoid being responsive to non-engineering members of the organization, or as an unrealistic attempt to turn software development into an assembly line of a bunch of jack-of-all-trades "cross-functional" team members ("specialists? we don't need no stinkin' specialists!"). But the core observation of agile is that writing huge planning documents and spending weeks perfecting PRDs and GANTT charts at the outset of an engineering project and then using these to derive project timelines and costs is inefficient, and that "delivery to QA" 3 months over an arbitrary schedule and 70% over an arbitrary budget is a classic failure mode for this approach to planning. Instead, a focus on building self-organizing, trusted teams who are delivering working software frequently and iteratively, and gathering customer feedback and adjusting "the plan" after each delivered increment of software can result in both happier developers AND happier customers.

Similarly, "lean startup" CAN be synonymous with "changing my mind about what business I'm in and 'pivoting' every 3 weeks", but really the core observation could be summarized as "build things people want", with all these new-fangled buzzword-y tools like customer development interviews, business model canvases and even "pivoting" as a means to this end. While the Ries book is useful, Steve Blank's The Startup Owner's Manual ( is phenomenal and the ideas there certainly "transfer very well outside the world of tech start-ups."

Take what works, leave what doesn't, ignore the hype and think critically.