By @SimonCocking review of The New Business Road Test: What entrepreneurs and investors should do before launching a lean start-up (5th Edition) by  John Mullins. Available from Amazon here.

ROAD TEST YOUR IDEA BEFORE YOU LAUNCH YOUR LEAN START-UP

 Thinking about starting a new business? Stop! Is there a genuine market for your idea? Do you really want to compete in that industry? Are you the right person to pursue it? No matter how talented you are or how much capital you have, if you’re pursuing a fundamentally flawed opportunity then you’re heading for failure. So before you launch your lean start-up, take your idea for a test drive and make sure it has a fighting chance of working.

Now in its fifth edition, The New Business Road Test is the essential handbook for anyone wanting to launch a start-up. The new and fully updated case studies – Ella’s Kitchen, Whole Foods, eBay and more – and ‘seven domains’  framework will help you avoid impending disaster and enhance your chances of achieving your entrepreneurial dreams.

This is a good read because the author is both a good writer and also an experienced entrepreneur too – something which is not always found in one person. The fact that it has gone to a 5th edition is always a good sign, that there is enough value to keep publishing it. He has also re-written, re-worked and re-analysed his case studies. He has also drawn on the benefits of a longer time span to assess if the case studies are still relevant and also what can be learned from a longer time perspective on them too. The Starbucks case study is a good example in particular as it’s story has evolved over time, and continued to grow and evolve, including with some periods of less than spectacular growth.

If you are looking to take a good look at whether your business idea will succeed or not then this is a useful, interesting and smart book to read. He also works hard on giving you the tools to assess if your idea has value or not, BEFORE you launch a lean startup, which makes this a useful addition to your library before you reach the Erik Ries stage.


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