Category innovation

What Is A Product?

The title is a question we have been kicking around at Neo for the last few weeks. I often refer to us as a product agency, as opposed to digital agencies that do marketing websites and campaign work. But what is a product? Here’s an initial stab. A product is a repeatable capability that delivers… Continue reading

Hiring an Intrapreneur Team

Let’s say you’re a leader at a Fortune 500 company. You know you need to move faster and take on more risks with your digital products. How do you conquer your “innovator’s dilemma”? You need the right structure and the right people. Today, I wanted to talk about the people. You need dynamic, passionate, multi-skilled,… Continue reading

Latest Iteration of the Assumptions Exercise

I used to mentor some of the very first Lean Startup Machine events and it was a lot of fun.  But I would consistently see teams struggle to think through their ideas holistically, and to concisely lay out their assumptions and risks.  They were getting stuck on the various canvases, so I created a simple… Continue reading

Bezos on the Post and Innovation

I bet many of you read the recent Jeff Bezos interview in The Washington Post, but I wanted to highlight these two quotes: “We’ve had three big ideas at Amazon that we’ve stuck with for 18 years, and they’re the reason we’re successful: Put the customer first. Invent. And be patient.” “In my experience, the… Continue reading

When do you hit the gas pedal?

“Unfortunately, the pendulum rarely swings halfway” — Eric Paley Eric Paley has a great post about founders hesitating to invest in growth, even when he thinks they should. Now, I’ve been in startups where either the CEO or the VCs tried to force growth too early, and had it backfire in a big way. Thus… Continue reading

Evidence, not Validation

The other day, I tweeted my discomfort with the words “validation” and “invalidation” when it comes to early stage products. They appeal to human psychology because we like clear, crisp, confident concepts. But the real work of applying lean in practice is much murkier. When is something actually validated or invalidated? An adequate answer to… Continue reading

Meetup’s Qualitative Research with “Jobs To Be Done”

Last thursday, I popped over to Meetup’s HQ to talk to Anna Howell and Brenna Lynch, two researchers on their team. They have been using the “Jobs To Be Done” framework, from Clayton Christensen, to organize their qualitative research. Currently, they are studying two critical moments in their customers’ lives: “first joining meetup.com” and “creating… Continue reading

The point of stupid buzzwords

Process fads roll through and it is easy to roll your eyes. They come with business books with one good chapter and 9 chapters of filler. But they can serve a purpose. I have found over the years that it is incredibly easy for human beings to get lost in the weeds, blinding themselves in… Continue reading

The Truth Curve

I wanted to share one of the slides from my talk at QCon last week. I call it the truth curve. On the X-axis is your product sophistication. On the Y-axis is how much you can believe your learnings versus having to strongly filter your results through your judgement and vision. Different types of experiments… Continue reading