Slowing Down in Your Early Stage

Many people said that building startup is all about speed and moment. You have to move fast and reach the scaling stage as soon as possible before ruining out your money or outstep by your competitors. This is true when we look at all the unicorns in their place now. They are very fast. They do many things in parallel, and also spend a lot of money more than we can imagine.

However, that’s what we see when they are already validated their business model. In my opinion, we have to zoom in on their journey when they are still in the early stage. When everything seems to be very unclear in the beginning.

Doing many things and experiments with a lot of assumptions could be your deadly road when you are still in your pre-Product Market Fit. Stop trying to go faster in every possible direction. Instead, slow down and try to figure out the validated and repeatable pattern across your customers.

If you see the past of many successful entrepreneurs, most of them start their solutions from a very niche market. Some of them even don’t believe that their product will bring them to succeed.

The young Zuckerberg started his Facebook not to all people in the US. He started from his colleges at Harvard. When pitched facebook to Peter Thiel, his early-stage investor, Zuck didn’t confident about Facebook and said, “If you don’t like this idea, I still have another business idea.”

Early-stage entrepreneurs have to find a pattern from a repeatable result, and then scale that pattern by using their resources. Finding a repeatable pattern is very hard if we try to go faster in every possible direction. We have to slow down and zoom in.

If we want to find what is the reason behind the purchasing activity of a customer, we can’t count on a random channel. We have to see whether one channel can bring other customers repeatedly. If we did experiment with Instagram ads, we have to look closely, do a customer who came for our ads has bigger probability to purchase. Does it also happen in many customers who came through ads?

Random is not repeatable. Random can’t represent a pattern. Accelerating on a random strategy that isn’t yet repeatable just gets you lost faster.

Speed is very important, but it will become a powerful weapon if you already find your validated pattern with your repeatable result.

Tim Ferriss in one of his podcasts said: “What you do is more important than how you do everything else, and doing something well does not make it important.”

Therefore, decide and find first what is your validated strategy. Next, do it fast and overcome all of your prospective competitors by becoming the biggest first.

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