September 26, 2011
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Ballad of The Lean Startup

An ode to validated learning.
The Lean Startup book cover

With IMVU not growing
And revenue not flowing
And with piles of cash monthly burning,
They asked
“Is it a mess,
Or is it progress?”
Then measured by validated learning.

With their customers confused
Eric’s ego was bruised—
All his basic assumptions were nixed.
They had to unload
All that beautiful code
Before the product could ever be fixed.

“What’s the last six months for,
Tossing my code out the door?”
Asked Eric all in a tizzy.
But he got his first taste
How to eliminate waste,
And make progress instead of just being busy.

You must build and release
(So says Eric Ries)
Then validate by query, wallet, and churn.
Ruthlessly measure
Though it gives you no pleasure—
That’s the only true way to learn.

So don’t fly blind
Or make up your mind
Stuck to ideas like a Nazi guards soup.
Relax your tight ass
And gather data en masse
To reduce total time through the loop.

Congrats, Eric, on the success of your book. It’s well-deserved.

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