Since I published The Lean Startup, I have been compiling stories about the challenges and rewards of adopting the methodology. Sometimes I would interview people and take notes, and they’d ask me what I was writing and where the story might appear.
“I don’t know,” I’d say.
I really didn’t. Writing a book is painful, and I wasn't sure I ever would do it again. Plus the details about day-to-day implementation I was asking people to share were unlikely to ever end up in a business book aimed at a general audience.
But I knew these stories and details were valuable--both for hardcore practitioners and people new to the methodology. Over time, whenever an old friend or new client would describe a roadblock they were facing, I’d be able to share a story about how someone else had used the Lean Startup principles to overcome a similar challenge. As I’d watch heads nod in recognition or agreement, it became clear how universal these techniques are—as well as how universal the challenges of working amidst uncertainty can be, no matter what kinds of products or companies we’re building.
The Lean Startup methodology is grounded in the scientific method, but it’s the stories behind the science that have helped so many people grasp why it can be so life-altering to work in this way.
The stories started to pile up. And then, through my work with both growing startups and large organizations I had begun to develop workshops, tools and a detailed curriculum to help founders and leaders set up these new systems and teach this new way of working.
Five years after I began collecting these stories and developing these tools, I’m thrilled that I can finally answer the question “What are you writing?”
I have just begun writing the successor to The Lean Startup. The working title for that book is The Startup Way, and it will be published by Crown and Penguin UK in 2016 or 2017.
But I also wanted to do something special with the stories, tools and curriculum that are usually only available to my clients. So I've decided to do a Kickstarter campaign to launch an experiment--a book called The Leader's Guide, which will be offered only to Kickstarter backers for the length of the campaign. It's my way of sharing this material with those of you who want to put these ideas into practice now, who don’t want to wait until The Startup Way is published to learn more.
The material in The Leader’s Guide has been battle-tested in my own work, but this campaign is an experiment to see what happens to these ideas without me standing right there. For that reason, I’m also setting up a private community just for this campaign, where backers can talk with each other, and with me and members of my team, about their real-life startup challenges. What I learn from you will inform my writing of my next book: I want to continue capturing your experiences, your stories, and your learnings as part of my research process.
This is a new kind of publishing process for me, and one I'm really excited about.
If you’d like to know more, below are links with more information, including a blog post I wrote for the site Medium, tickets to our campaign kickoff party at SXSW, and the campaign itself:
Here's a link to the official Kickstarter campaign for The Leader’s Guide.
You can find my Medium post, "Can a book be a startup?" here.
And for those of you in Austin, please join us at the Official Lean Startup SXSW Party as we celebrate the kickoff of our campaign. The festivities will be held that Monday evening from 6:00pm - 9:00pm at Old School Bar & Grill.
Thanks so much for your ongoing support of my work and your participation in the Lean Startup community. I hope you’ll check out the details of the campaign and become a backer.