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Two Giant Steps Forward for Entrepreneurs

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While entrepreneurship is in the news fairly regularly, I seldom make news myself. Today, however there are two important updates for entrepreneurs everywhere. Let me be brief...

The "Startup Owner's Manual" goes On Press Tuesday 2/14
Two years in the making and literally ten years in development, I'm proud to announce that my new book, The Startup Owners Manual, goes onto the printing press next Tuesday. This 608-page work is, as its subtitle says, "the step-by-step guide for building a great company." It's the result of a decade of me learning from 1,000 of entrepreneurs, corporate partners, students and scientists the best practices of what wins in startups. I've spent the last two years cramming knowledge into this new book.

2012-02-09-StartupOwnersManualHardcover.jpg

In brief, The Startup Owners Manual is far more detailed and more readable than Four Steps to the Epiphany, (most of the sentences are even finished!). In fact, you could say that all that remains from my last book are the four steps of Customer Development. Briefly, the new book

  • Integrates Alexander Osterwalders "Business Model Canvas" as the front-end and "scorecard" for the customer discovery process.
  • Provides separate paths and advice for web/mobile products versus physical products
  • Offers a ton of detail and great tips on how to get, keep, and grow customers, recognizing that this happens very differently between web and physical channels.
  • and finally it teaches a "new math" for startups: "metrics that matter.

While MBA's have had a stack of texts to help them "execute" a business model, this book joins the growing library of books for practitioners in "search" of a business model.

The Lean LaunchPad Online Class
My online Lean LaunchPad class has created a lot of buzz this week. As you may have heard, I was deep into the production of the lectures when I realized I was producing the wrong class. The online class was originally based on my book The Four Steps to the Epiphany.

Only when I held the draft of my latest book, The Startup Owner's Manual, in my hands, did it dawn on me that my online students deserved all the latest best practices of entrepreneurship and Customer Development. Not the stuff I taught a decade ago, but all that I've learned teaching the Lean LaunchPad in front of students at Stanford, Berkeley, Columbia and the National Science Foundation in the last year. And I particularly wanted to incorporate I've spent two years integrating into The Startup Owner's Manual.

So apologies to all of you who were expecting the class this month. I hope to get the updated version online in the next 60 days. I'll keep you updated on this blog as we record our lectures.

In the meantime, if you want to prepare for the class...or get a jump on your startup competition, you can start reading the "recommended text" for the online class right now by ordering my new book. It is recommended--not required--reading for the free online course, and I believe it will be immensely helpful to the startup community at large.

Lessons Learned
  • Startups search for business models, exisitng companies execute them
  • There are tons of texts about execution, but a paucity of practical ones for founders on how to search
  • The Startup Owner's Manual is the definitive reference book for founders, investors and everyone interested in startups
  • The Lean Launchpad on-line class will be based on the new book

Steve Blank's blog: www.steveblank.com