5 Best Practices Startup Must Follow While Developing Product

The Startup ecosystem has been growing over the past few years. The effect of globalization, venture capitals and crowdsourcing that eventually weighs down to good ideas being backed by enthusiasts and being accepted by the audience. According to the 2019 Global Startup Ecosystem Report (GSER), “the global startup economy is worth nearly $3 trillion, a rise of 20 percent from 2017.

While the global market keeps creating opportunities, having an idea alone doesn’t always suffice. In the words of Guy Kawasaki, Alltop Co-Founder and Entrepreneur, “Ideas are easy. Implementation is hard.” Product Development is a booming business and the increasing demand for products and services supports the growth. But, with opportunities come the challenges and competition. As startups it is always better to stay cautioned and follow the best practices to ensure best results.

Here are 5 Best Practices Startup Must Follow While Developing Product.

  1. Stay Customer-oriented

Isn’t there a saying? That Customer is the King! Believe it or not, the success of product development hinges on this very aspect. Right from scoping to product characterization to product validation to providing support/service, it has to be customer-oriented. The likes of the customer, their preferences and the market demand define both the internal functions, that includes ideation, creation/development, marketing and so on, as well as the external functions that include product release, product placements, customer satisfaction etc.

  1. Stay True to The Strategy

The product strategy governs the entire process. As a startup, it is easy to be blown away by the suggestions provided by suppliers, technological partners etc. But, once the strategy is designed, stick to it no matter what as it is after all the result of hours of research and brainstorming. More so because the strategic intent of every organization differs, for some it is just about being noticed, for some, it is about shattering the competition altogether, while for some it is just about creating a product that is truly useful. The same goes for business objectives, financial goals and scope. Every startup is unique and the success of product development lies in staying true to the original idea.

  1. Follow the Process

Sticking to the strategy is one thing while being process-oriented is another. There is a plethora of processes in the market, but as a startup finding a process that suits the requirements, matches the organizational vision and paves the path towards the end goal is a basic necessity. Once the process is decided it is best to follow it to the T for best results. However, don’t be too rigid. It is important to have a bit of flexibility at some critical points in the process.

  1. Involve the Team

In the words of Cathy Atkins of Metis Communications, “The entire company should be unified across all channels, whether it’s go-to-market, marketing, launch messaging or customer support. Ensuring customers have the best experience possible with your company and its product or solution is critical for long-term success.” Take it as an expert advise and involve the team in product development. As a startup, the team size is usually small and having everyone on board is essential to get the product development right. It is also important to foster a culture within the team, that prioritizes focus, clarity and purposeful direction for creating innovative products.

  1. Don’t be Stuck in Review Cycles

Reviews are essential for finetuning the product. Having a single-gate process for making the management processes simpler is a good way to go about as the cross-functional tasks run parallelly and any bottleneck at the approval stage is clearly visible, making it easier to resolve. It is essential to keep track of the reviews so as to no be shackled in the review cycle. For startups, making an impact would depend on good quality product development and timebound delivery, both of which will be impacted if the review cycle is taken lightly.

As startups, being singularly focused about the goal can be a great way to meet the goals, but remember to be open to iterations. While it may take a while to get it right, and over the time you may also have to tweak the process a bit, but that’s something only trial and error would teach. As startups, it is good to be open to learning, but it is even better to do your groundwork well to get it right at the first run.

And if you need more assistance than what these best practices offer, then get in touch.

Lokesh has over 12 years of experience in the IT industry with demonstrated success and experience in new product initiatives, product management, solution consulting and business analysis. He has successfully built 4 products from ground up. “Champions take their chances and pressure is a privilege” is a motto with which he likes to approach everything in life. He also runs a food chain by the name of “The Egglicious Café” and can be found on weekends at the outlets experimenting with different dishes and interacting with customers. In case of any queries, you can reach to him on lokesh.kumar@knowzies.com.

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