🚀 The Book in 3 Sentences
- A simple 4-step process, TOAD (Target-Obstacle-Answer-Demand) can be used to generate and validate business ideas.
- Validation is everything – use it generously to filter through potential business ideas and solutions to find real problems worth your time and effort.
- Do the least amount of work possible in the shortest time to prove that you can solve your chosen problem.
If you are looking for a no-nonsense primer on product development before you start your first entrepreneurial journey, this is it.
I absolutely love how approachable and minimalistic the framework and techniques discussed in the book are! Really appreciate the fact that it is so hyper-focused on the first two steps of product development (the most daunting for wantrepreneurs like me) – finding and validating ideas/problems.
Being a developer myself, I’m used to the building side of business. While things can go wrong while building, most businesses fail because they’ve built something successfully – which no one wanted! This book can help you avoid that by putting the problem and people first before the product.
Having an easy-to-follow and repeatable framework for product development is a superpower! It gives you the requisite confidence moving through your journey and takes the stress out of entrepreneurship. Isn’t life stressful as it is?
The cute artwork, illustrations, diagrams and well-placed and tasteful humour make the book a joy to read. Check out his simple business process diagram from the book below!
The book aside, the author Leon Bambrick is just a fun, hilarious guy – give him a follow on Twitter!
Who should read it?
This should be super obvious from the book’s title – anyone looking to find and validate an idea for their first product!
More specifically, I would recommend this book to an aspiring solopreneur/bootstrapper/entrepreneur looking to start an online, product-based business, but is having a tough time coming up with great business ideas.
Even if you have plenty of potential business ideas, I’d still give this a read. It’ll give you a simple, and effective method framework to validate your ideas and give you the confidence you need before you start developing your product.
🌄 How the Book Changed Me
- Since I never could come up with too many original ideas, I thought I wasn’t suited for business. The framework recommended in the book changed this limiting belief – I know have a simple, repeatable process to come up with business ideas.
- I no longer automatically disqualify markets which seems crowded. This opens up more avenues for potential ideas for me in pre-validated markets.
- Instead of looking outwards for potential business ideas, I look inwards. What kind of groups am I a member of? What kind of problems do I face day-to-day? Who would I like to serve?
- I can now identify online avenues where I can find my potential customers, interact with them and understand their problems.
- I had the belief that to solve a potential problem, your solution had to do a lot more than it actually needs to. Now I would timebox myself from three days to a month. (depending on the complexity of the problem)
- I now know that even negative feedback on your proposed solution is better than silence, and it can be leveraged to tweak your product to success.
✍🏻 My Top 3 Quotes
- “Finding 10 real customers who demand the product, is a way to ground the idea in reality, right now, rather than three years down the track after you’ve exhausted yourself.”
- “Listen to your customer’s problems, don’t listen to your customer’s solutions.”
- “Don’t be scared off by a seemingly crowded market. Wherever there is demand there is likely to be existing supply of some sort.”