Startup, Scaleup, Screwup

Startup, Scaleup, Screwup : 42 Tools to Accelerate Lean and Agile Business Growth

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Real-world tools to build your venture, grow your business, and avoid mistakes

Startup, Scaleup, Screwup is an expert guide for emerging and established businesses to accelerate growth, facilitate scalability, and keep pace with the rapidly changing economic landscape. The contemporary marketplace is more dynamic than ever before-increased global competition, the impact of digital transformation, and disruptive innovation factors require businesses to implement agile management and business strategies to compete and thrive. This indispensable book provides business leaders and entrepreneurs the tools and guidance to meet growth and scalability challenges head on.

Equal parts motivation and practical application, this book answers the questions every business leader asks from the startup ventures to established companies. Covering topics including funding options, employee hiring, product-market validation, remote team management, agile scaling, and the business lifecycle, this essential resource provides a solid approach to grow at the right pace and stay lean. This book will enable you to:

Apply 42 effective tools to sustain and accelerate your business growth
Avoid the mistakes and pitfalls associated with rapid business growth or organizational change
Develop a clear growth plan to integrate into your overall business model
Structure your business for rapid scaling and efficient management

Startup, Scaleup, Screwup: 42 Tools to Accelerate Lean & Agile Business Growth is a must-read for entrepreneurs, founders, managers, and senior executives. Author Jurgen Appelo shares his wisdom on the creative economy, agile management, innovation marketing, and organizational change to provide a comprehensive guide to business growth. Practical methods and expert advice make this book an essential addition to any business professional's library.
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Product details

  • Hardback | 240 pages
  • 193 x 244 x 23mm | 574g
  • New York, United States
  • English
  • 1. Auflage
  • 111952685X
  • 9781119526858
  • 294,184

Flap copy

The lifecycle of any business model starts up, scales up, and at some point, screws up. This dynamic collection of examples, principles, and practices addresses head-on the challenges that entrepreneurs and intrapreneurs face.

With interviews from an international group of successful startups and scaleups, this book contains invaluable advice for creating, sustaining, and letting go of a business. The author and interviewees explore a wide range of topics that are vital for anyone dreaming of starting a new product or service and for entrepreneurs and intrapreneurs in the scale-up through scale-down phase.

The book reveals how business leaders craft their product vision. A winning vision describes the essence of an innovative product and clearly shows what it aims to achieve for its users and customers. Once your vision is in place, the book helps choose from various funding options, define the qualities to look for in your first hires, how to get your product to market, and much more.

The book's tools and tips are designed to accelerate lean and agile business growth. They cover a diverse and important set of topics, such as: working with a remote team, optimizing workflows, and discovering how to use a North Star Metric and a Journey Map. Ultimately, the author prepares the reader for the date when it all comes crashing down...because one day it will.
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Back cover copy


"A raw and authentic founder's playbook for making the often messy process of starting-up, a lot less messy. Highly recommended."
--ASH MAURYA, Author and creator of Lean Canvas

"Startup, Scaleup, Screwup is the definitive toolbox for every leader who is determined to build an organization that keeps getting bigger and better. Jurgen Appelo draws on his extensive experience, wisdom, and sense of fun as he teaches us how to use the Shiftup Business Quilt, Lean Personas, Value Proposition Wheel, Pirate Metrics, and a host of other powerful and useful tools."
--ROBERT I. SUTTON, Stanford Professor and author of bestsellers including The No Asshole Rule and (with Huggy Rao) Scaling Up Excellence

"This is both a personal story and an exciting collection of new and familiar tools. Founders should not skip this."
--NATHAN CHAN, Publisher of Foundr Magazine


"The only thing I'm an expert at is learning tons of things that might help me solve my problems, and then sharing my insights publicly along the way. Fortunately, people seem to appreciate that. . . I learned so much this past year from all the research that I performed and all the interviews that I did. I'm convinced that my business is better off now because of the many things I picked up that we could implement right away. I might even suggest that all startup founders write their own books. I would read them for sure."
--From the Prologue
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Table of contents

Prologue ix

1 Persistence of Vision: Inspire team members, customers, and investors with a Product Vision: a mental image of your desired future 1

2 Stories of Your Life and Others: Discover the Business Lifecycle of startups and scaleups and reflect on exploration, execution, and Product/Market Fit 7

3 Picking Up the Pieces: Make a Business Quilt by remixing the Lean Canvas and Business Model Canvas and adding a dimension of time 21

4 The Persona Protocol: Better understand your target customers and their Jobs to Be Done by creating Lean Personas 35

5 Fortune's Wheel: Figure out your Unique Value Proposition by investigating the customer's Pains and Gains and making a Value Proposition Wheel 41

6 The Crowded Shadows: Learn about the benefits of Equity Crowdfunding and choose between the use of a crowdfunding platform or doing it all yourself 49

7 The Lunatic Cafe: Meet every day with your team for a Daily Cafe and Work Out Loud by sending each other Daily Updates 55

8 Streams of Silver: Visualize your work with Kanban Boards and optimize the workflow with Work in Progress Limits 61

9 The Invention of Everything Else: Discover the Innovation Vortex, which emerged by combining the Design Thinking approach with the Lean Startup method 67

10 The Terminal Experiment: Validate hypotheses with Lean Experiments so that you can Pivot, Patch, or Persevere on your way to Business/Market Fit 77

11 Fables and Reflections: Get together with your team for an Agile Retrospective to do some reflection and work on your Improvement Backlog 87

12 Kings of the North: Navigate your business in the right direction using a North Star Metric, with the help of Support Metrics and Check Metrics 95

13 The Entropy Tango: Keep a Product Backlog with Minimum Viable Features and Experiment Stories updated through ongoing Backlog Maintenance 103

14 A Pleasure to Burn: Keep an eye on your progress with Burn-down Charts, Burn-up Charts, or Cumulative Flow Diagrams 113

15 The New Recruit: Get your hiring process in order with a Recruitment Funnel, sourcing by the founders, and some Skills Tests and Work Samples 119

16 The Enigma Score: Start workforce planning and talent management in your business with Hiring Scorecards that help you avoid culture misfits 129

17 Standard Hero Behavior: Learn a good approach to Job Interviews using a combination of Behavioral Questions and Behavioral Tests 135

18 The Darkest Road: Manage the expectations of stakeholders with a Product Roadmap, created with experiments, outcomes, and a Rolling-Wave Planning 141

19 Ghost Writer in the Sky: Set yourself up for content marketing and e-mail marketing with a Content Calendar and a Content Backlog 149

20 Million-Dollar Gamble: Aim for Agile Funding of your business with small batches, small budgets, and keeping multiple options open 155

21 Spheres of Influence: Get insights into the creation of a Pitch Deck and learn about the essential and the optional slides 167

22 Heart Journey: Describe the optimal customer journey and user experience with a Journey Map and discover the Moments of Truth 177

23 A Pirate's Tale: Find your way on the path to success, from awareness to revenue, measured with the Pirate Metrics 185

24 Test of the Twins: Learn about Growth Hacking and Conversion Rate Optimization with Split Tests, Multivariate Tests, and Cohort Analysis 193

25 Culture Clash: Identify Core Values, create a Culture Code, and use stories and rewards to prepare your business for scaling 201

Epilogue 209

Acknowledgments 213

About the Author 215

Index 217
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About Jurgen Appelo

JURGEN APPELO is an author, speaker, and trainer with 400 trainees globally who license his workshops on making management fun, to help creative organizations survive and thrive in the 21st century. Jurgen is CEO of the startup Agility Scales, and co-owner of the scaleup Happy Melly. He is the author of Managing for Happiness: Games, Tools, and Practices to Motivate Any Team from Wiley.
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Rating details

88 ratings
4.08 out of 5 stars
5 40% (35)
4 34% (30)
3 20% (18)
2 6% (5)
1 0% (0)
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