Dear Steve Blank, this is incredibly irresponsible




Steve Blank Quote:
It should go without saying that this post is not advice, nor is it recommendation of what you should do, it's simply my observation of how companies using Customer Development positioned themselves to successfully raise money from venture investors.

Rafer sez:
I'm all for being non-judgmental, but this is ridiculous. When you are in a position of authority, it's incumbent upon you to say when something is a terrible idea. Do not publish instructions on precisely how a founder would poison the next couple years of their lives.

I've shared my thoughts on it, but I'm curious (since you have more experience than me) what you find so objectionable.

Rafer sez:
@cowboy You aren't the only one who asked, so I must have been unclear. Blank is laying out a path to raise a round of capital before there's a business. Raising such a round has such a tiny, tiny probability of providing economic benefit to first time founders that it's the startup equivalent of Russian Roulette instructions -- using five bullets instead of one.

He ought to have written "Don't do this" across the top in big red letters. And since that's the case, why write it at all?

Scott: I think we have two totally different take-aways from this article. First, Blank outlines “what companies ‘used’ to do (read: still)” - business plan -> funding -> execute.

In the second section, he goes on to suggest if you follow Customer Development and iterate to product-market-fit (or at least close enough to it), *that* is the time to raise money, when you need it to fuel a viable business, and can demonstrate to VCs that you have a viable business (or are close to it)

How does this poison a founders next couple of years? Still unclear on your objections.