Jul 23, 2023

If you want to build a ship, don't drum up people to collect wood and don't assign them tasks and work, but rather teach them to long for the endless immensity of the sea.

Antoine de Saint Exupéry

Building software is a way for me to learn about the world and develop capabilities for myself and opsZero. I build these capabilities based on a modified version of the Amazon's Working Backwards methodology. Amazon uses PR/FAQs as a primary focus tool for launching new products, orienting resources around a two-pizza team. I modified this process to incubate and build the initial products using a common framework called System6. The products I build have the following criteria:

  1. Simple to Build: The product must be simple to build and should function through an API, Extension, or Service. It should also be easy to monetize with tools like Gumroad and Lemon Squeezy.
  2. Job to Be Done. Products perform a single task well for a single customer segment. Products don't need to be everything to everyone. If a product can fulfill the need for multiple segments it is a separate product.
  3. Single Threaded Owner. Once an initial version of the product is built and launched there is a single threaded owner to build out the sales and marketing for the product. The opsZero team takes over the building of the product.
  4. One Week Deadline. Products are launched even if imperfect within one week of ideation.

We use the following checklist for launch:

  1. Scaffold. Notion Teamspace, Cloudflare Domain, Brand / Product.
  2. PR/FAQ, Landing Page. We start with a simple PR/FAQ and a landing page before we build the product.
  3. Product & Finance. Make a product that can generate positive cash flow.
  4. Testimonials. Ask for 10 testimonials and referrals from existing customers.
  5. Growth Team. Once a product has 10 testimonials assign a growth team to build out the business.