This is the final post culled from notes I wrote in preparation for a talk at Kansas City Design Week (KCDW). See the slide deck here.
At the start of this talk, I'd defined entrepreneurship as undertaking risk to create customer value by making needed things, receiving feedback on them, and improving business performance iteratively. And I'd said I wanted to answer this question: How might we bring design into businesses to improve their chances of success?
Here's my answer to that question. Increasing the chance of success for design-led businesses requires entrepreneurs to define their impact potential, seek out “duh” problems, make desirable solutions at greater and greater fidelity, and work in cycles of learning. If there's anything you remember from this talk and put into practice, I hope it's this.
Every week, every month, every year, your business is growing and changing. Uncertainty and change can feel daunting, especially with so much risk in the process of running a business. But change can also be great fun, an exciting process of discovery for everyone involved—your customers and your teams, everyone that’s along for the ride. And it won’t stop until the ride is over.
So take regular breaks as you sweat your way towards your entrepreneurial vision. Swap stories and support those that are part of your team. Don't get too worried (yet) about breaking away from the peloton. And take in the stellar view you might miss, both in the peaks and valleys, if you don't stop to take a look.