Bob and I had a true luminary on our podcast this week – Steve Blank, the founder of the principles of Customer Development. I was a little star struck! Prof. Blank is one of the most important entrepreneurial thinkers of our time … I felt so lucky to have the opportunity to speak with him.
While reviewing his first book and talking with him, I came up with a summary of the most important lesson for a software developer like me who wants to be an entrepreneur – focus on WHO, not WHAT.
I just had dinner with some other programmer/entrepreneur friends, and I saw the same impulse in them … it’s so exciting to focus on the product – the WHAT – that it’s hard to focus on the customer – the WHO. It’s not enough to build a cool product. You have to be able to find the person who will buy it. It’s all about the WHO.
The real pleasure of getting to meet my heroes like Steve Blank is just getting the sense of who they are as people. My impression of Steve Blank is that he is very kind. He really cares about helping entrepreneurs learn and succeed.