Last year I went to the FooFighters Wasting Light concert and fell in love, well I was already in love with Dave Grohl, but in love with that album. There is a song called Walk and the lyrics go -
“Do you remember the days
We built these paper mountains
And sat and watched them burn?
I think I found my place
Can’t you feel it growing stronger?
I’m learning to walk again
I believe I’ve waited long enough
Where do I begin?
I’m learning to talk again
Can’t you see I’ve waited long enough?
Where do I begin?”
Well, I am happy to say that the last two years of concerted effort have finally resulted in having found my place. I am happy to say I have found some balance between what matters to me and what is within my reach to impact. You may recall I don’t do little stuff – I eat elephants – so it took me a while to find a place that I could 1) make a difference, 2) create a satisfying life. Though there has been a lot of startup activity here in NYC – it is not really my space, digital media (ad buys and that sort of stuff). In fact, I even spent time learning about email marketing / ad based web 2.0 model stuff and I just don’t love it. So – not the spot for me. Here, in this new place I can make a meaningful contribution, work with a team of people I can trust, and target a market of people I admire and respect. For the first time in a long time I can am really looking forward to the work…and that is really what satisfies, isn’t it?
The last two years have been spent learning – mostly about lean philosophies and techniques – thought leaders and players – and I continue learning everyday. Last year I was invited to write the curriculum update for Iridescent Learnings’ Technovation Challenge, and when I did something clicked. For those that don’t know – Iridescent Learning has programs to teach girls to code. I participated last year and was so moved, that I have done everything I can to be associated because it was important to me! I found a group that really needs my help! And suddenly I realized that the struggle I had finding relevance in the new work economy is the same trouble many students have as they exit university into a world they are not quite prepared for, often with a “relevance” disconnect with parents who have no idea how to help their kids on the road to success.
That spark found oxygen and has become a warm little fire – now in development and know as Applied Lean™. I am committed to the right care and feeding so that this little fire will grow and illuminate a clear path for the modern entrepreneur. Stay tuned for all that is modern lean!
Posted in @msksboyd, Applied Lean, Emerging Tech, LeanExp
Tagged Applied Lean, Dave Grohl, Education, Foo Fighters, Lean Experience, Lean Startup, Modern Lean, Startup
I found this blurb the other day though I forget where so sorry can’t credit exactly – just know that though those are not my words. What is interesting about them is they aptly describe the last 18 months of experience I have in the lean startup space. How I got here is well documented in past blogs – but suffice to say it all started with looking for a job. Yes, every problem is a job, but is it a job you want? To know that you first gotta figure out which problem you want to solve. And then, the question is whether that is a job that you want to do! Lean is a good way to figure that out, and to figure out lots of other things as well.
The last 18 months has allowed me to dig really deep into the lean startup space – specifically the principles and techniques conjured by thought leaders Steve Bank and Eric Ries, Ash Maurya, Alexander Osterwalder and some lesser known names but really smart folks none-the-less. I am a long-time supporter of organizational effectiveness techniques – my exposure reaches back to TQM and ISO 9000 – and that only matters when it comes to the hole in the current lean movement.
Here is what you have – youv’e got your books – Eric, Steve x2, Ash x2. Youv’e got your canvas’s – BMC, LeanLaunchLab, Youv’e got your cusdev techniques and case studies with EGCD guys, and you got your startup weekend proper and the iterations LUXr and the like. All BONUS! Love them. Where we are falling short is in the problems we are trying to solve. Unless you get into a good incubator I am not sure that applying lean will push you to build a meaningful company…and then because of that, the jobs that are created may be on the very small scale. I am not the first to notice this, but in noticing, I found that filling that void is something I am passionate about. It really boils down to righting the disconnect between the disruption of work and the innovation of business so that the engine of our economy – our middle class – can find solid footing again. I believe innovation in entrepreneurship is the crux of the solution. And surely that innovation can push past a new monthly subscription site – though, there is NOTHING wrong with that! I just think that space will be “vewy vewy cwowded” ;>) Continue reading