Lean Startup Workshop

In June, I had the chance to attend the Advanced Lean Startup Workshop, presented by Tristan Kromer and organized and hosted by Rob Aalders in the Volkshotel in Amsterdam, creative hub for startups. Beforehand, I had some knowledge about the Lean way of working. Tristan is an expert in helping startups as well as large organizations with applying innovation and working around different challenges which can appear in this process. For more workshops organized, look here.

Other than me, there were some colleagues of different (larger) organizations who want to start working with Lean more and implement it in their organization.

We started out with thinking about different business models and the concept of MVP’s, minimum viable products. By working in twosomes, every couple got to attack a real-life problem out of their own business or another example.

After his, we got a further introduction in the model of lean, the build, measure, learn principle and the best way to design an experiment when also dealing with the possible risks of ignorance and perspective at the same time. It was an eyeopener for me how you should be able to explain your business (model) in one sentence to any other person around you, called the Comprehension Test.

Ways to prioritize in experimenting, different ways of doing research and improving your business model and product were treated in a very practical yet interactive way, which I liked.

We spent a larger part of the afternoon bringing the lean method to life by customer storyboarding and value stream mapping; so putting post-its in the customer process up, deciding which is necessary in the process for adding value for the customer and making improvement suggestions. Making thing visual and discussing them with others always gives a lot of insights. Also, the idea that a value proposition is different for each customer was an open door, but very important to realize again.

In the end, even a small amount of lean mathematics was treated in explaining different storyboard metrics, how to apply in to your testing and the concept of failing and learning from it in the best way was touched briefly.

We concluded the day with short discussion and afterwards had a drink together. All together, a very nice and insightfull day with an renowned expert from San Francisco who took the time and effort to educate some Dutchies about Lean.


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