The more I work with early-stage founders the more I see gaps in the Product Market Fit model. We can count the days that Product-Market Fit is the be-all and end-all.
A quick overview in cases you are unfamiliar. Product Market Fit is creating a product that proves it is the solution that the market values, i.e. you can build a profitable business. We do this with a Minimal Viable Product, the smallest solution that customers will buy.
The problem with Product Market Fit and Minimal Viable Product is that it creates barriers. It is a series of hurdles, rather than an encouraging world in which anyone with a great idea can thrive.
The need to build an MVP requires money, knowledge and technical skill. That is an enormous barrier to jump already. Those that fit the mould get a head start. Greater support, less discrimination, and to top it off, there are few diverse role models. The innovation space has a very homogeneous look.
How can innovation thrive if so few people are not part of the conversation? How many great ideas sit on the weigh side because the sector does not encourage all-comers?
Something about the way we support and invest in innovation needs to change. For me, this is about taking the focus off the product and placing it onto the founder—the person with the idea. Find out what it is that makes them unique and create systems that support them.
It all comes from having the right Chemistry,