Book Review: Disciplined Entrepreneurship Bill Aulet
October 16, 2013 Leave a comment
Given so many of my Senior Colleagues have recently separated from Microsoft and are considering their next move, I figured I would continue with my Book Club Book Review activity I was doing as part of my Community Lead Activities. This week’s book Disciplined Entrepreneurship by Bill Aulet. The book is a consolidation of the lessons learned within the Center for MIT Entrepreneurship. The book lays out 24 Steps to a Successful Startup in a style similar but not exactly like Stories that move Mountains.
Unlike most entrepreneur books, this one moves you away from focus on product design early. Instead, rightfully in my opinion, Aulet has one focus on the customer. Not with platitudes of the customer is always right or any other such tripe. Aulet firsts asks you to identify who is your customer. Not just a name but getting intimate with details about who s/he is; what motivates them; and what are the things you could do for them of value in their eyes. While many consider the myth of the lone Entrepreneur pushing his/her better mousetrap into the public consciousness as the path to success; the numbers of successful businesses do not bare this out. The majority of those that succeed focus on satisfying a customer’s need or desire. From here you are asked to size the market based upon defining your prospective customers. One may and are likely to have to iterate on this customer/market size equation until a viable market is defined to go after. From this step one finally goes into defining, but only at a high level, a product concept to be validated with beachhead customers. After this baseline is established many of the traditional techniques are put into play to define a business model (refer to Business Model Generation as an example).
Overall I give the book five stars for content, readability and applicability.