You’ve Gotta Stop Tinkering

— April 13, 2017

Recently, I’ve been working on a sister brand for Fuego Diablo, my premium steak company. The new endeavor is called The Carnoisseur, and it provides a channel for us to share some steak-related content and co-brand with complementary non-competing products under a neutral umbrella. This new sister brand is something that’s a long time in the making, but we’ve come now to sort of an awkward stage in the product development journey: The part where we just have to sell the thing, rather than tinker with it any longer.

I think this is part of any new concept. You obviously want to talk to people, to get feedback, to revise your product or service and make it the best it can possibly be. Anything that’s worth doing is worth doing well, and for entrepreneurs, that can be an invitation to keep experimenting, keep testing, keep building.

But at some point, that has to stop. At some point, the pie is baked. Version 1.0 of your product is done, and it’s time to just get out there and sell it. If you don’t acknowledge this line in the sand, then you’ll just tinker forever. You’ll never sell—or accomplish—anything.

So here’s my advice for entrepreneurs who are working on a new product development: Pick a point when it’s done. Select a date on which you’re going to call the thing finished, put a ribbon on it, and shift your focus from development to sales. And once you get to that point, focus only on how you’re going to move units—nothing else.

Of course, taking a new product to market will bring some new feedback, and down the road you may want to make a version 2.0. Succeeding as an entrepreneur requires you to have the confidence to step out of the laboratory and hit the sales route, though—and that means deciding early on that, at some point, you’re going to call your product done.

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Author: Matthew MacQuarrie

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