Review of Lean Customer Development

In following suit with the other Lean books in the series, Lean Customer Developmentby Cindy Alvarez  gives companies a tangible and pragmatic approach to develop and validate product ideas through iterative and targeted customer development research. The premise of this book lies in providing a fast and flexible research methodology to understanding one’s customers, their behaviours, and most importantly, how to build insights that can give you more accurate assumptions.

Developing your product, whilst adding and augmenting your feature list, you want to be sure to have a valid hypothesis, and concurrently re-validating your hypothesis as you iterate your product, providing a layer of assurance that you are progressing in the right direction. This book is full of interviewing techniques, the types of questions to ask, mapping your customers (and how to even find your customers before the product is built, which the author goes into great detail in), what to ask the customers, what responses and subtexts to look for, and even maintaining a healthy skepticism.

The author in the later chapters guides you in building an audience-driven MVP (minimum valuable product), with chapter 7 outlining various case studies, which I found to be an excellent boilerplate that assisted me in conceptualising how to maintain a customer-focus whilst building the 1.0 features I wanted for my product.

Along with another of my favourite books, Lean Analytics, I highly recommend this book for anyone who is looking to create a new product, or even work on a major revision for an existing product, and rather rely on their own biased assertions, get valuable customer involvement and input earlier on in the researching stages. This book is easy to read, and for me I will tend to re-read this book a few times, and use it as a reference guid as well.

Concise: 5

Level: 2

Prior Knowledge: None. Made for marketing strategists and entrepreneurs.

My rating: 4.5

AuthorCindy Alvarez
TitleLean Customer Development
Publisher: O’Reilly Media
Date: May 2014

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