Mistakes always teach you lessons and it is even better if you can learn from other’s mistakes. Devver, a startup with testing and metrics tools for Ruby applications, is shutting down and the founder has shared some candid lessons from his attempt.

1. Ecosystem: The ecosystem is always ready to help you but you need to learn how to ask for help. (Being a Social Entrepreneur). Early involvement with target group is important. Also, if you can get a mentor early on board, nothing like it.

If you are working on a startup, don’t be afraid to ask for help! The vast majority of people want to help you succeed, provided that you respect them and their time. That means you need to prepare adequately (do your research and ask good questions), figure out their preferred methods of communication (e.g. don’t call if they prefer email), show up on time, don’t overburden them, and thank them. And when other people need your help, give back!

2. Founding Team: Having a co-founder with same skillset as you do may not be of much benefit. You should always look for someone who can compliment your abilities so that the whole circle of building a business can be taken care with the same passion.

3. Product: You need to find the minimum viable product (MVP) and deliver it as fast as you can. This gives you a chance to get involved with the customers and understand what they really need and what they would really be willing to pay for.There is a strong chance that your MVP is not really the minimum.

We released our first version to some moderate success and then proceeded to continue to churn out features without really understanding customer needs.

You need to show the customer a basic product before asking what they need. And don’t rely on “a feedback” or “the feedback”, analyse every need from business point of view before making it just another feature in your product.

mistake

Cheers to the Devver team for trying!

Read the complete experience on Devver’s blog.

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[Naman is a startup enthusiast and has worked with couple of Indian startups as Product Manager. He is the founder of FindYogi]

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