Mick Liubinskas started his talk with an admission, a somewhat shocking one given the topic at hand. In front of a room full of potential Lightning Lab applicants, startup wranglers and enthused entrepreneurs Mick admitted:
‘I love and hate focus, I love it because I know its the tool you need to grow your startup. I hate it because I am really bad at it..’
For those not in the know, Mick has spent 20 years turning ideas into startups, and those startups into thriving businesses. His experience spans capital raising right through to investing in ideas and a great list of exit businesses to support this. Part of the team at Aussie accelerator muru-D, Mick joined the Lightning Lab crew for a talk on just why you should be focussing on focus.
Amongst the talk were many gems, from personalised advice for those there, to a great deal of content and conversation. If you weren't able to make it, we have four tips to get your focus on…
/1 Having focus on the long term game, does not mean making it happen now.
Mick spoke a lot about not only having focus, but making your focus realistic and in an essence contained. Why focus on the scaleability of an idea, when the plausibility of it working has not yet been explored? An advocate of mocking things up in paper before getting down to the code, Mick asked everyone to think business case, workability, testing and then of course scaleability.
/2 Focus on the up, even in the down
Encouraging everyone to flearn their way to success, Mick hammered home that even in a state of failure, it is the focus on the next up that matters. Fail fast, and learn quickly - taking those learnings on to your next iteration - its called flearning kids and it even has its own .org.
/3 Focus can hone your value proposition, and grow your business
You can do two things at once, you can add a new service to your portfolio, you can even start a new business - but should you is a whole other thing entirely. Citing businesses that juggle too much, and offer too little depth in the process Mick encourages everyone to hone down. Pick one thing. Focus on it. Do it well
/4 Customer focus does not just mean customer service.
Good customer service is definitely needed, but customer focus extends to getting customer buy in at white paper stage, taking them on a journey and even assessing how viable this would be to prospective customers in the future. How many people have had someone say ‘Yes i totally would buy that product/service’ only to have them not interested at release date. Mick encouraged users to sell a product before it is even a reality, got an idea? Sell it at pitch state. Get honest feedback.
Thanks to the crew from Lightning Lab for making this talk possible. If you are feeling freshly focussed on your start-up why not take it to the next level? Apply to be part of the Lightning Lab accelerator.