The Ignite talks at the Lean Startup Conference in San Francisco in December were a lot of fun, both as an attendee and as a speaker. Below is the video of my talk on “Just Deploy It!”.
In my talk, I focused on 5 anti-patterns that I see regularly in companies who are not deploying software quickly enough. Here’s a quick summary of the points.
1) Avoid Release Plans
If you are planning your releases for the next two quarters, you are wasting your time. Don’t do that. Release plans are for big inefficient companies, but startups have way too much volatility for this to be useful.
2) Don’t do Big Bang deployments
If you are deploying a bunch of new features, bug fixes, pricing changes, marketing changes, or more, all together, how do you know what caused the problem if customer conversion rates go down? You need to do lots of specific and small releases so you can correlate them to user behavior and know exactly what they like and don’t like.
3) Logins and Admins are low priority
Too many teams first focus on the user administration parts of a project, but this is the least valuable thing you could start a project with. Find some more valuable feature that you can run an experiment on first with your customers.
4) Delay Load Testing
Don’t spend a lot of time load testing features that you don’t even know yet if customers will like. You are unlikely to have a big rush of new customers on day one.
5) Kill the Betas
Stop using the term beta, and thinking in terms of betas. Treat every day like it’s a beta of some small feature you are working on. Betas just encourage risky big bang releases.
So stop trying to do so much at once, release more often, and just deploy it!