An afternoon with Guy Kawasaki: “Don’t worry, be crappy”

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Tuesday 13 June 2017

An afternoon with Guy Kawasaki: “Don’t worry, be crappy”

Those who don’t know Guy Kawasaki from his days at Apple or his career as a venture capitalist, surely know him as a seasoned entrepreneur. He’s renowned for sharing tips on entrepreneurship with the crowds, and at SXSW he did just that with our editor Magali De Reu. How to hit the sweet spot as a startup? Read all about it here.

#1 Focus on your prototype and not your pitch

According to Kawasaki, startups invest way too much time drafting the perfect pitch. “If you get the prototype right, the pitch will follow,” he says. “It’s become nearly impossible to set up a useful business plan anyway.

What you’re trying to achieve this year might not even be relevant by the time you make it happen. Again: the key to success is getting that prototype up and running. Make sure you have something to sell as soon as possible. Step away from that Excel sheet or PowerPoint presentation. Because until you have that prototype going, you don’t even have anything to pitch.”

#2 Don’t be a perfectionist

Ready to launch your prototype? Good. Make sure it reaches your potential clients. “It’s better to ship quickly rather than to focus on perfection,” Kawasaki believes. “It’s a complete waste of time and resources to build that perfect product right out of the gate. You need to scale fast as soon as you find the right product-market fit, that’s what it’s all about. Or what I like to call it: don’t worry, be crappy. Remember that you only have two jobs as an entrepreneur: make it and sell it.

#3 Create impact first, revenue later

It makes sense that raising capital shouldn’t be your ultimate business goal. “But that’s often where it goes wrong in the first place,” Kawasaki confirms. “As a business, your first and foremost goal should be to have an impact on society. If you make meaning, you make money – not the other way around. You can’t expect someone to spend money on something you would never pay for. If you understand the needs of society, you’ll know what the client wants. It’s as simple as that.”

Hungry for more tips from South by Southwest? Be sure to keep an eye on our blog, we have more great insights coming up! 

- Blogpost by Magali De Reu 

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