Cover by Ash Maurya

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Chapter 2. Running Lean Illustrated

A great way to understand the meta-principles covered in Chapter 1 is to see them applied to a real product.

I wanted to pick a simple example that would be readily understood. So, rather than picking a software or hardware product, I decided to outline the process I used to write this book.

Even if you haven’t written a book, you can probably appreciate the steps that go into writing a book, which, as you’ll see, isn’t unlike building a product.

Case Study: How I Wrote Iterated This Book

Writing a book was never in my plans. I was too busy running my company. I started my blog in October 2009 because I had more questions about Lean Startups than answers.

Along the way, a few of my blog readers started suggesting that I turn my blog posts into a book. I knew writing a book (even from blog posts) would be a massive undertaking, so while I was flattered by the requests, I did nothing at first. After about a dozen such requests, I decided to explore further.

What follows is how I applied the Running Lean process to writing this book.

Understand the Problem

I called these readers and asked them why they wanted me to write a book. Specifically, I asked what would be different about this book from what was already on my blog, or in other blogs and books that are already out there. In other words, I was trying to understand this book’s unique value proposition in relation to existing alternatives.

From these interviews, I learned that, like me, my readers were ...

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