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What is the most important piece of advice you’ve been given regarding starting a business?

Bill Fox, entrepreneur, of Ivy Motivation, LLC, lauded Discovery-Driven Planning in a Harvard Business publication, Harbus.

“The best advice I have received was from my marketing professor, Ray Weaver, and the article Discovery-Driven Planning by McGrath and MacMillan. The basic advice was to get to action as early as possible in the planning process. A business plan for a new venture relies largely on unfounded assumptions. By limiting the planning process and getting to action you are able to prove or disprove the key assumptions earlier, reducing the risk that you waste time and resources on a flawed business model. However, this does not mean that we scrapped the entire planning process or neglected developing a business plan. A good example of Discovery-Driven Planning is our assumption of the cost of tutors. We found that it was unnecessary to perform substantial research to develop an assumption on how much we would need to pay tutors when we could easily start trying to hire tutors for our actual business and use an accurate number for further planning. I think the one exception to the principle of quick action is in product quality, where we need to be sure that our product is up to our customers’ high standards. As such, much of our time in the planning process was spent developing and testing our online tutoring service.

To read the entire interview, click here.

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