What came first, the mission or a problem? In your product...

Richard Shepherd
4 replies
Curious to learn more about how makers approach the 'need' to make a product. I can relate to three ways in which makers say to themselves 'I'm going to invest my time and money into this idea'. 1. You solve a problem for someone. Maybe you're a freelance web developer and you fix one problem for one person because they asked you to and you thought, cool, let's solve that for more people. 2. You invent a problem and then find people that have that problem and give them your solution. This seems to be were missions take the focus. i.e. 'we're on a mission to make X better' - oh cool, I didn't know until just now how much better X could be! 3. You have a problem which you fix for yourself and you find others that also have that problem as you go along. Are there other ways in which you can approach this? Which approach works best? Is there a hybrid? Should the problem (like 1 or 3) come first or the mission (2)?


Lior Barak
For me it was problem first, I was required to solve data problem, too many Excel files and not enough decisions made, it turned into a mission I wrote a book and now days finishing my product
Raunaq Vaisoha
I look for needs of mine where the available products aren’t doing a good enough job for me. Let’s say for instance, it’s managing the invite list for a webinar I’m hosting for a small group and I happen to think that Eventbrite is too complex for my needs. This gives me the feeling that if I made a much simpler product for this need that it would serve the job to be done much better and more people like me would hire it over the incumbent product. In essence, I look for a problem I’ve faced where I can build a solution with a meaningful competitive advantage over existing solutions.
Tarek Dajani
From my end, it's slightly like number one, but for me it is trying to simplify and automate the process as much as possible, while, trying to be slightly better than competitors (atleast for v1).
Erika Ferszt
For me it was a bit of both. I've long been on a mission to try and help people improve their psychological states of being and this kind of kept me very open to "where are there problems I can solve". When I hit my professional burnout I didn't know that I could solve that problem until I stumbled on the science that showed me how. After I discovered that the problem could be solved, it became my mission to make it happen.