5 steps to quickly validate a Business Idea

I was invited by eChai (https://echai.in/) at L M College of Pharmacy today to talk about validating business ideas as a part of their pre-accelerator program. This is the post summarising what I talked about there.

In-case if you are not into reading, here’s a quick video of the same.

In-case you are, here are quick bullet points:

Step 1: Research

  • Google forms is not research

  • The goal is to not ask leading questions. The goal is to get rid of our internal confirmation biases to get real answers.

  • Research is not to prove your hypothesis correct. It’s the other way around.

Step 2: Find and study competition

  • Instead of saying ‘here’s how we are better than the competition’, try to understand what is the competition doing well.

  • Absence of competition means that other people do not see an opportunity which should mean more research might be required.

  • Imagine if your were founder of your competition. What would you know then that you do not know right now.

Step 3: List your assumptions

  • Do not keep your assumptions in the head. Write them down.

  • Put them somewhere so you can see them daily and try to validate or invalidate them.

  • Written word of your assumptions will decrease your confidence. So keep them around.

Step 4: You don’t need to build your product

  • Find out what is your minimum viable product that can help you validate most of your assumptions.

  • More often than not, you can assume that technology will always get ready if there is a market for it.

Step 5: Your Product is not your Startup

  • Challenges of most mature startups is never their product. It’s either cash-flow or team or anything else. But never the product.

For a successful startup, a good product is a necessary condition but not a sufficient one.
  • Figure out your financial model, your distribution channels etc. Just building your product is not going to build your startup.

Cheers, -Yash


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©2021 by Yash Shah