The Collider was born to lead change through tech-transfer, building bridges between science and business. As discussed in our previous post “Why does scientific research in Spain excel so much and return so low?“, it seems the research world is still reluctant to embrace entrepreneurship, but there is one aspect where Business should still learn from Science and that is, obviously and simply put, “experimentation”.
Both small and large companies proceed with a bag of misconceptions, often rooted on a “play safe” approach that turns out to be counterproductive for their goals. The “lean” methodology aims to fight this conservative views proving that testing and early experimentation can make us much more competitive in the end. As far as prototyping is concerned, there are a few beliefs that stop companies moving forward building, measuring, learning; for example:
Fear of failure. Having dreams and money at stake, this is understandable; however, such fear is as pointless as failure is inevitable. Embrace failure and focus on the real point, which is: failing fast to succeed sooner.
Being the no.1. Yes, we all want to be pioneer inventors, be it product or service, but as a rule of business, you’ll also know that timing is often much more decisive than perfection. Therefore, our advice is to reuse previous knowledge and save as much time possible in prototyping.
Lacking a point. Testing for the sake of testing is of no use. A prototype is built to prove (or not) a hypothesis in our commercial roadmap. This can be as simple as testing the return of a new button or as complex as testing a new concept of car sharing. Whatever it is, define a clear goal.
Secretiveness. “I have an amazing idea but I can’t disclose it” is a real comment heard sadly too often. Certainly, you can register your idea if you’re genuinely worried about copyright but the truth is communication will do much better to your idea than keeping it to yourself. Bonus tip: Learn to detach.
Finally, and overall, the above points converge in one global state of open-mindedness, as does the lean methodology, based on testing, testing, testing. If you already have the idea and are willing to put it to test, start by grabbing a paper and letting your friends know. Then prototype thinking on the final product and try to avoid cost bias as it can make you lose focus. Remember: execution is everything.
Wishing you luck!