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Understanding versus respecting knowledge
Let's chat common startup mistakes...
If it is not obvious from this newsletter, I consume a lot of content (startups, growth, data, psychology, product). I read and listen to learn, hoping that I’ll absorb an interesting concept and implement it into my day-to-day. While consuming knowledge is no doubt a key (and cheat code) to career growth, I’ve found that there is a stark difference between understanding a concept and respecting it.
Let’s take the most common first-time founder mistake: focusing too much on “building a solution” (product) instead of “solving a pain point” (market). You’ve likely already read or heard advice about the importance of honest customer discovery and pain point analysis. I’m sure it all made complete sense to you. Yet, countless founders (myself included) still fall for the common trap of making too many assumptions about market demand or the severity of a pain-point. Instead, we build a vitamin that never scales.
Respecting knowledge oftentimes comes from making mistakes and accumulating scars. Jack Altman tweeted some common mistakes that first-time founders make. I’m sure that as you skim through them, they will all make perfect sense. You’ll understand them, but will you respect them?
Raman at Rhetoric