Lean Startup refers to a methodology used for developing businesses and products that differs greatly form the traditional business plan model.
The Lean Startup concept was first introduced in 2008 by Silicon Valley entrepreneur Eric Ries. The Lean Startup method away from elaborate, time consuming planning in favor of product or service experimentation. This experimentation centers on shortening the product development cycle while at the same time, meeting the needs of the customer.
Countless companies spend a tremendous amount of time creating what is thought to be the perfect product or service. In many cases, after all the time and effort has been spent on this endeavor, the company learns that the customer doesn't need all the features offered, or worse, that there is no customer base for the product or service.
The concept of Minimal Viable Product (MVP) is important to the Lean Startup approach. This term is used to describe a product that has just enough features so that it can be introduced to the marketplace. After the products release the company relies heavily on customer feedback to determine what the customer liked and doesn't like about the product. Once all of the feedback is collected the build, tweak or pivot strategy of Lean startup comes into play. To pivot in this instance means to make a structured course correction in an effort to test new ideas regarding the product or service.
The Build, Measure and Learn Cycle is an important component of the Lean Startup model. During this cycle feedback is reviewed on an ongoing basis and utilized to create the strongest, most viable product or service possible.
The Lean Startup can best be designed as a fluid process that uses consistent feedback to determine what the marketplace values enough to pay for. The importance placed on cost savings has made this approach an attractive option for those interested in starting and growing a business.