The Ignobel Awards of Startup/Hustle Advice

The Lean Startup Methodology and Pomodoro Technique are deserving of Ignobel Awards for bad startup advice

Sai Ramachandran


Photo by Liam Edwards on Unsplash

The Lean Startup/MVP Methodology

It is received wisdom that building an MVP to validate that a market exists for a product is the most effective way to start up.

Well, this is only true if you are building a greenfield product where you get to chart the course of the product.

Say you are launching a restaurant. The Lean Startup version of a restaurant would be one without dishwashers and signature dishes which were store bought microwave dinners.

Problems with the The Lean Startup Methodology

It is ill defined. No one actually knows what Lean Startups look like. The problem with Lean Startups is that it is like Agile. Every team claims to be Agile but no two Agile practices are alike or even fungible.

If staying Lean could either mean throwing up a landing page to collect emails or spending billions to develop an Apple Vision Pro (starting price $3500) to iterate and improve over the course of years, the problem is with the definition of Lean, not its practitioners.

Lean Startups were (probably) valuable back when the internet was a baby and writing jQuery to make ajax calls was “innovation”.

Today, the pace and ease of innovation is such that your MVP is going to be usurped by a more polished, less turd-y version before the first email sign-up lights up your notification screen.

What happens when you follow Lean Startup?

You will end up spinning your wheels trying to figure out the boundaries of your MVP. Instead of building the product, you spend time un-building it.

Meanwhile, if you are competing in an established space, someone who can build a similar product faster, better, and cheaper will come along and steal your market from right underneath you.

The Pomodoro Timer/Technique



Sai Ramachandran

Building - GPT for teams. Manage AI costs and retain visibility with SquadGPT. All views personal. Email =