What are your top 3 tips for startinga venture with a long (7+ years) product development cycle and enduring while waiting for launch and fulfilment?
It is difficult to determine from your profile which of the 3 interests you are targeting. If it is the consumer (wine) space, this is crowded and consumer tastes move so fast you may want to rethink it. If it is farming, you need critical partnerships in advance that have an interest. Corporate farming is advancing very quickly on production and process. The same goes with energy related projects.
1) Deep market understanding - including relationships with your target.
2) As Ron pointed out, a crack product manager who lives and breaths the space.
3) A reliable emotional and financial support system for the regular cycles of doubt because 7 years is so long to know if you actually have been productive.
Get the best product manager money can buy.
When it takes that long to get to MVP, either you're very slow, or you're waiting for state of the art to mature. In the former case, get faster. In the latter case, you're doing applied research, not launching a business. Do something else.
If I am understanding this correctly it will take 7+ years to get to the Starting Line to run your Race, Vision, Venture. I get this as I have a longer vision for our company outperforms.co to deliver a solution for hiring that today takes average US company 39 days to fill an open FT position and to get it initially to 2 days and by 2021 under 2 hours for a connection (interview or hire), and by 2023 an almost instant 2 minute connection .
I have spent 1 year at a $0 Salary and have made many mistakes.
Here are three: #1 No income or a stretch of income that is below your life's needs is doable but "extremely painful"per my experience. My suggestion for others...Figure out how to (first go smaller, less wants) and get income of life's needs + 20 to 25% cushion. Bonus Suggestion if at 25%+ income trade all of the extra income for Time and Social Impact...a VA, Freelancers, Marketing, Developers, Small Crowdfunding or Impact projects, and anything that moves the needle forward.
#2 Parkinson's law is the adage that "work expands so as to fill the time available for its completion". I overestimated the time available. My Suggestion smaller time frames and bigger goals. Make it where "You/Your Team" can't hit the objective without other people.
#3 Get More..Feedback Fast, Feedback Often - Silicon Valley says Fail Fast, Fail Often, I like the term Feedback as it is more organic and continuous as compared to Fail or Failure which is more absolute.
Big Vision and People - I am a connector at heart and yet somehow I didn't get the (all) the right people early in the process. Suggestion - Get others excited about your Venture's Vision and about you and have them "buy in" somehow. Doesn't have to be money...can be time, resources, or the connection
Here is a couple things I would consider.
Read BOLD by Peter Diamandis www.diamandis.com/bold ...He is shooting for Space Asteroid Mining (maybe you are too)?
#1 -How can we 10X (with accountability) this project to make 7+years into 7months for a "Wizard of OZ" basic product/service that can be sold, taught, implemented, in a profitable way, with other true believers that leads in a semi direct path to our BHAG. EX: Can we use the SPRINT Model to get Beta1 out now, Beta2 next year, and by year 7 we are on our 7th iteration and are 2x to 3x ahead of what we originally expected? Also, Don't forget that if you are not somewhat embarrassed by what you are rolling out then you are being a perfectionist which kills the feedback loop.
#2 Be the "Right Kind" of Startup Paranoid - Tell yourself and your team this right now (Seriously... Post it on your Wall!)...Our Vision is so big in 7+ years there will be 10 other companies that will have a bigger and better " X " than what we are envisioning right now. Knowing this how can we accelerate to create and market a "Blue Ocean Separating Impact" that places us as the clear winner? Know the difference between "Your Story" and "Your Ventures Trade Secrets". Don't ever hold back on telling others about your story and getting them to "Buy In" to you and venture. Basically have the story, never say "We are currently in stealth mode." If the vision for the venture is big enough "Buy In" should include connection, talent, help, and impact from multiple people/groups.
Now "Your Venture Trade Secrets" are another thing. Dive Deep until you find your "Trade Secret Hypothesis". That secret that if you told your competitors everything else about what you are going to accomplish but held the trade secret back they still would not be able to beat you!
You may find if your honest that you don't have the "Trade Secret" yet based on the above. If this is the case "Double Down" and tell 2X as many people your vision until you get that "Aha" moment that typically will come from the feedback of the many. Personally, I like all feedback...Positive feedback builds us up and helps us get through life in a startup, Negative or Constructive feedback is helpful and it allows for growth in vision and self.
#3 Rest 1 - The bar none Undisputed Champ... "Greatest Creator of All Time" accomplished what today we still believe to be "Humanly and Scientifically Impossible" in 6 Days! Take note, GOD rested on the 7th Day. You are in this for the long haul, find your 7th day and rest! Work 6 and Rest & Recharge 1 day every week. Schedule this 1 day rest for you and your entire team weekly.
Hi... It seems like you'll be nurturing a baby and growing a kid into maturity. I feel you are kinda proud, so here are my humble tips for turning the baby into an exciting joymaker.
1. Stay close to it, keep your all your senses in alert, grow with it, learn to detect effects of the environment on the product well before, it turns into a sellable product. You will need to react fast and have swift turnarounds and be able to improvise solutions to keep utmost quality. Learn to build contingency plans.
2. Start some social media organic networking, with content that will finally lead to your product. Nowadays a product without Facebook, Twitter , Pinterest or Instagram accounts and a company without a Linkedin account at least, is homeless, without fixed abode. Build the product's community during the 7 yrs it will pay off.
3. Get the best Brand Builder you can afford, even if you can't, make credit... Returns on Investing into a good CMO can be huge and highly rewarding. Besides, it looks like the little one needs a strong father, doesn't he?
That were only my 2 cts to you Lina, the rest is yours :)
No one can answer this because you haven’t supplied enough info!