Commenting on other “Blank vs Jobs” Comparisons

I’m one of many using Steve Blank’s Four Steps to the Epiphany when teaching entrepreneurship at MBA school. Jeffrey Bussgang has a great post on “Steve Blank vs Steve Jobs“.

The comments stream is like a FAQ of customer development. I like it. Adds stuff like

  • Eric Ries view that “We’re not listening to customers, we’re experimenting on customers.”
  • Customers can only comment about what they know … doesn’t help with new markets.

My only niggle is that I don’t believe it’s “Steve vs Steve”, I think it’s more like Steve on how to become Steve. An iterative style and learning from ones mistakes is a common theme in the Jobs book. For example at Pixar it wasn’t instant success. The sale of software failed, the sale of hardware failed, it was the third thing, animation solutions, that succeeded. I think that Blank’s “Customer Development Model” and Ries’ extension “the Lean Startup” provides a rigor, and focus on detail, that the Big Zen Steve would have liked. Essentially this is how you can learn to say “This is Shit”, build what the customer desires, and not what the customer asks for.

Tip to Christos ( @c_makiyama ) for tweeting this link 🙂

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