Book review. Pretotype by Alberto Savoia

pretotypePretotype It: Make sure you are building the right ‘it’ before you build ‘it’ right.

Have you ever poured your heart, blood, sweat, tears and money to build, perfect and launch an innovative “can’t miss” startup or product … and then discovered that your “can’t miss” idea turned out to be something that nobody actually wanted or needed?

In this brilliant little book (which by the way is little / short because it is in itself a prototype – a test to see whether it’s right before he writes a whole book), Alberto Savoia, a successful Silicon Valley serial entrepreneur, angel investor and former Google Engineering Director and Innovation Agitator, introduces the basic principles and tools of pretotyping along with many examples.

If you are at all familiar with  with the Lean Start-up method and the concept of a MVP, a pretotype (the thing you build before you build the prototype) is the same thing so there are similar concepts around failing fast, applying a scientific method to evaluating your idea (rather than asking your friends and family) and actively trying to find reason for an idea to fail rather than kidding yourself that you will be able to solve all the problems somewhere down the road once it’s built.

The book is short (like one or two evening’s short!), straight to the point and yet inspiring. This book gives us an important tool we should maximize. At a time when so many new and exciting technologies inspire one to build or innovate and yet is filled with risk, pretotyping gives the answer to appease both the overly optimistic and the nay sayers alike.

If your new product or service fails fast and cheaply, you will have the time, resources and energy to try something else – and keep trying until you have a hit. But if you’ve spent months and years and tons of money on a single idea that flops, you may have ran out of time, money and energy to give it another go. Pretotyping can help you avoid “The Innovator’s Nightmare” by helping you make sure that your are building the right ‘it’ before you invest too much time and money to build ‘it’ right.

You can buy it directly from Amazon on Kindle for 99p / 99c on this button