Some Assembly Required Part 3: Unladen Swallow

Written by Chad McElwain 7 months ago

To Recap:

  • Incredible idea, check.
  • Owning of that idea, check.
  • Let go of the idea, prepared to pivot, check.
  • Peace with the cost, check.
  • Resources and partners found, check.
  • Ready to get to work and take over the world, check.
  • Now What the H-E-Double Hockey Sticks Now!?

What you do depends on a bunch of things; at its core you have to get organized. You have no choice now but to be organized, consistent and persistent. That might sound easy reading it here but this is the hardest part of the whole process. The success of your idea depends on you, not anyone else.

Your idea is your responsibility.

Getting advice at this stage is exactly what you should be doing. But don't make the same mistake that a lot of people do don't talk to successful people, you can if you want I guess, but you won't get useful advice from these folks. You want to find the people who have failed the most, dusted themselves off and tried again. You don't need someone who is successful and at a different phase of their product lifecycle to give you advice. Not yet. You need to find the people who have tried and failed, tried and failed over and over again till they got it right.

My losses column is way longer that my wins column, that is not what matters. People who try and fail consistently then finally succeed learn from their mistakes. And that is what you need. Get to know the pitfalls, find out what not to do, what can wait, what can't, and learn where to focus your organization efforts.

The First "Advice Bank" Deposit

  • Don't, please don't go and sell your idea to someone and promise a due date before you even have a team to build it. Building something takes time. Transferring the pressure of covering your own @$$ to your team is not cool.
  • Don't offer shared ownership of your idea. If someone you want on your team mentions the possibility then fine, have that talk with them. You have to remember you are in this case ignoring the first bit of advice. If you offer a percentage of ownership of something that doesn't exist yet you are now selling your team members imaginary compensation. As we all know imaginary compensation doesn't buy a lot or pay a mortgage.
  • Don't transfer your stress to your team. You are lucky to have them. They know more about this than you. You want to be surrounded with people smarter than you, thats a good thing. You know what you want, they know what is possible. You might have to give up the spinning rims at times, but you still get the Cadillac.
  • Last freebie. If you have deadlines; for the love of all that is holy recruit a project manager. You are the product owner, not the PM. Know your role, stay in your lane. Please for the sake of everyone involved, stay in your lane.

Stay in your lane.

Success is up to you, the product owner. It is not up to your team. It is their job to own very small parts of your product and they are awesome at it. (Make sure you tell them that.) You need to be looking to the future, making a 5 year plan I suppose is the common practice. 5 years is not good enough. If you want to be successful you need a 20, 30, 60, 100 year plan. Plan the entire product lifecycle.

If you product plan looks like this stop, just stop.

  1. Build thing
  2. Make money
  3. Make more money
  4. Show everyone how much money I made

Stop reading this now, go find something else to do. Become a day trader. Invest in crypto currency (learn about crypto currency) insert other buzzwords here. I have seen product outlines that look just like the one above, no joke.

There is this thing called the 5 stages of the Product Lifecycle; these are pseudo babble-garbage, lets look and shake our heads in disappointment together.

  • Product Development. (Duh)
  • Introduction. (So... marketing)
  • Growth. (Sales)
  • Maturity. (Recurring sales, sustainability)
  • Decline. (Bottom falls out.)

Looks simple but its not; and there are not 5 stages. You need to plan between those stages. You need fallbacks and points to pivot, you need a product survivability and execution plan. These 5 stages have invisible dots between them that need to be connected. Contact us we can help you connect those little suckers. We want to help you. We also do Crosswords and pretty good with Sudoku puzzles. Rock-Em-Sock-Em Robots is also an option. It's always an option and yes that was a challenge... Bring it.

Thanks for reading and following along! Please visit our website for more photos of this and other projects. If you need help with your idea please contact us!

Come back for Part 4: Holy $#!+ It Works... Sort Of..., and thanks again!