Start Complex, End in Failure


As per Steve Blank "a startup is an organization formed to search for a repeatable and scalable business model." Nowhere in this definition is mentioned that a start-up should develop a technically advanced or a complex product. Especially engineers quite often still equate start-ups with advanced technology and are prone too mock start-ups with basic technology or simple product. This is probably due to the fact that some of the most successful start-ups such as Facebook, Twitter, Google have over the years developed extremely complex technology to support the scale at which they operate. One does forget quickly that all these companies started with a pretty simple service that has become complex only over time. I think that any start-up that bases it's fortune on a complex product is doomed to failure. Namely, complex almost by definition equates to expensive to maintain and difficult to change, thus draining precious resources and slowing down start-up in it's quest for product-market fit and business model. As a rule of thumb I'd say that a start-up in a seed stage should limit itself to develop only a product that is sufficiently simple that a single programmer could develop and set it up from scratch in a week time once the exact product features are identified. Anything more complex quickly becomes a millstone around start-up's neck, a situation Zemanta knows very well from her own past experience.