To avoid falling into the build trap, companies can adopt several strategies. First, they should focus on outcomes rather than outputs. This means measuring success not by the number of features shipped, but by the value these features bring to users. Second, companies should foster a culture of continuous learning and adaptation. This involves regularly gathering user feedback and using it to inform product development. Third, companies should not be afraid to pivot or change direction based on market feedback. Lastly, companies should avoid becoming too attached to their original ideas or ways of doing things, as this can prevent them from innovating and responding to market changes.

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The concept of the build trap is highly relevant to contemporary issues in product development and market disruption. It refers to the situation where companies become overly focused on developing and launching new features, without considering the actual value or outcome these features bring to the users. This can lead to a loss of market share and increased vulnerability to market disruption, as they are not effectively responding to user needs or market changes. A classic example of falling into the build trap is Kodak, which failed to adapt to the digital photography revolution. To avoid the build trap, companies need to shift their focus from outputs (features) to outcomes (value for users).

Measuring success in terms of outputs refers to the tangible products or services that a company produces. This could be the number of features shipped, the number of units produced, or the number of services rendered. On the other hand, measuring success in terms of outcomes focuses on the results or impacts of these outputs. This could be the value that these outputs bring to the customers, the market share gained, or the level of customer satisfaction. While outputs are easier to measure, they may not necessarily translate to success if they do not lead to positive outcomes.

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Escaping the Build Trap: How Effective Product Management Creates Real Value

How do you get ahead of your competitors and deliver actual value for your customers? It takes more...

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