Lean Startup Rémy Blättler Chief of the System, Supertext AG remy.supertext.ch @swissghostrider Theory & Motivation Examples & Learnings

Lean Startup

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Lean Startup. Theory & Motivation Examples & Learnings. Rémy Blättler Chief of the System, Supertext AG remy.supertext.ch @swissghostrider. Born in Eschenbach Electronics technician @ Cerberus BSc in CS at HSR in Rapperswil Co-founder Collaboral Startup @ Technopark Zurich. Reto. - PowerPoint PPT Presentation

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Lean Startup

Rémy BlättlerChief of the System, Supertext AG remy.supertext.ch @swissghostrider

Theory & MotivationExamples & Learnings

Reto Remy• Born in Eschenbach• Electronics technician @ Cerberus• BSc in CS at HSR in Rapperswil

• Co-founder Collaboral• Startup @ Technopark Zurich

West Coast (SF) East Coast (NYC)

Remy Blaettler

“Chief of the System” at Supertext, the fastest growing Swiss translation and copywriting company

[email protected]


What does a successful startup need?• A great idea• Good timing• A rocking team• VC capital• and lots of hard work (and time)


Enter the lean startup

The background

Eric Ries was a fairly unsuccessful serial entrepreneur.He was searching for a way to increase the success rate of his startups.

Based on the principles of lean manufacturing from Japan (Toyota)

The principles

1. Entrepreneurs are everywhere2. Entrepreneurship is management3. Validated learning4. Build-measure-learn5. Innovation accounting

Traditional management

• Set exact targets based on experience and existing clients.

• Plan and execute accordingly.

Successful execution of a plan that leads to nowhere.

School:Waterfall, maybe Agile

Traditional management

Clearly does not work for startups.

“Let’s just do it” is adopted.

No management does not work either.

Build – measure – learn feedback loop







First: a reality check

1. Idea!2. Does your customer have the problem

that you are trying to solve?3. Will they pay for it?4. Will they pay YOU for it?5. Can you build the solution for that


Try to sell the product before you build it

(It’s not the same as asking customers what they want.)

Build – measure – learn feedback loop







MVP (minimum viable product)

Skimp on features not on quality.

Remove any feature, process or effort that does not contribute to the “test”.

NOBODY is going to steal your idea

And if they can execute your idea quicker and better than you, you’re in trouble anyway.

Build – measure – learn feedback loop







Quantitative learning

You can always justify failure as part of the learning experience, but that's a bit cheap….

Use experiments, not market research.

Innovation accounting


• Time• Budget• Features• Quality


• Actionable vs. vanity metrics

• Only measure things with a clear cause & effect.

• Split tests

Dave McClure’s pirate metrics (AARRR)


Don’t give up too quickly.But don’t try to ride a dead horse either.

Listen to customer feedback!

And adding more services to the wrong idea is not the answer.

BackgroundWhat are you trying to achieve?

Hypothesis[Specific repeatable action] will [Expected measurable outcome]

DetailsHow will you setup this experiment?

ResultsEnter your qualitative/ quantitative data

Next actionWhat is your next experiment?

Validated learningWhat did you learn?

Validated or not








Grow & adapt

Make sure the paid acquisition is not higher than the customer lifetime value.

Eventually your business should grow faster than the build-measure-learn feedback can loop.


It’s simple: API sourcing

Traditional• $20k for a web


Lean• $30 for a

Wordpress template

• $25/month for an online db knack

An online database for pharmaceutical ingredient suppliers.

Just start somewhere

Pain: project managers send out complicated Excel sheets that are always out of sync.

Solution: build something that keeps them in sync.

First idea: synced project management in Excel

Better idea: generic synced spreadsheet!

CollaboralRemyShared Excel

Shared Word

Shared PowerPoint

Desktop and web version

Enterprise edition

School edition

Free edition

Spent 2 weeks on the login page

RetoShared Excel desktop version

Spent 2 weeks building the VB client


What we sold to our clients


What we actually had


Our plan…


… and the reality

Keeping deadlines - Dosensio

• Built shared drive for Sharepoint• First working prototype after 2 months• Perfected it for another 12 months• Ran out of money and released it

⇨ Turns out the customer wanted something different

Startup excuses

1. I have no idea

2. I have no money

3. I’m not a developer

4. I need a logo first

Need an idea?

• Photos of tourists with a camera drone at the Eiffel tower

• “Create an event app” app

• Email snooze for Outlook

• Hollywood tours with a lift platform

Funny footnote

Eric Ries was working on something completely different when he came up with the lean startup approach.

Forget about the million dollar idea

Just start something. Anything.

Lean Startup Machine by Trevor OwensLearn to build a successful business in three days.

Lean Startup Machine (LSM) is a three-day workshop on building a successful business.


Lean Startup Factory

Build a real startup in one weekend.And we’re not talking about just a business plan.


Reduce the batch size

Example: lettersFold, pack, close the envelop and put on a stamp.

Single-piece flow instead large-batch approach

Speed up release and learning cycles

Your prototype should not take more than 90 days to build. Full time or part time.