Although SV seems to be a forgiving and at times failure promoting space, not too many people talk about their failures until they’ve “made it”. The SV culture has seen an influx of international startups this past couple years, and many of the fresh transplants have a keen interest to know about the failures they may face.
Failcon took place in mid-October, and as in years past, it bright in a great group of speakers who spoke about topics such as marketing, scalability and the lean startup. For many the highlight was to meet Eric Ries, author of lean startup and in some ways a guru for many of the speakers, who cited him as an inspiration in pivoting product goals, to scaling their team slowly.
Yet, most speakers spoke a lot about listening. Everyone seemed to say, listen then design, create, explain, and even come up with the idea. Customers needs were, simply put, still being forgotten, and whether it was Braden Kowitz, Google Ventures, talking about design for ghat, or Eric Ries himself speaking about entrepreneurship, they all seemed to say, keep going, but show your product before it’s fully done to your target customers, get their voice to help you make better traction.
So, instead of obsessing on why the speakers chose to speak at FailCon, I thought to take my insight from the audience/customers of the conference, many of them who had only been in SV for a few days/weeks.
Why attend FailCon? “It’s a good head start for program with innovation Norway. Failing is not as acceptable in Norway. We stress validation of customers, talk to customers, to these companies.”
– Åse Petterseb Baikey, business development manger, Innovation Norway
“It’s a great thing to verify even if I’ve done the mistakes . Great to know others have done the same. My previous company was in the same situation as [the case study presented by one of the speakers.]”
– Hans Gallis, co founder & CEO, Fixx.li
“We’re here to see if we’re going to fail, grow or who knows! It’s my first startup and it’s always good to learn from other people…”
-Siddharth Singh, founder, Wavespot
“I think Eric Ries is really good, he talked about his failures, not his book. Last year they had Vinod Khosla. I come to FailCon every year as I want to hear why [founders] fail.” – Chris Maresca, managing partner, C_32
“I think the people on the stage are really gutsy. My favorite talk was by Gina Bianchini, her perspective was interesting. In Norway, women in business is common, but tech is still male dominated. Mixed teams give much wider views of perspectives.”
Morten Fjeldstad, CTO, Hubii
“SV is famous for saying failure is good, but THIS conference puts a stamp on that.”- unknown
Sent from my iPhone so please excuse any odd predictive texts !