To Code or Not To Code

mvp validation

To Code or Not to Code…

Software founders can save money by learning how to build software prototypes or minimum viable products themselves. This requires that they already know how to code or have an interest in learning about building their own product. If you don’t have the time or don’t want to learn the code, you can hire employees or contractors (and other options) to do the work for you.

Many people are afraid of coding software themselves, often because they don’t have a strong technical background. Programming is difficult. However, lean methodology is becoming more prevalent and its principles can be used to turn an idea into a minimum viable product (MVP).

Before beginning the journey to write your own code, you must ask yourself four questions:

  • Do you have the time?
  • Do you have the right skills?
  • Do you have enough money available?
  • Do you plan to scale?

If you have the time, have or are willing to learn the skills, have enough money, and don’t plan to scale your business beyond a small startup, then you have the ideal situation for developing the code yourself.

Learning to Code

Learning to code is the first step in programming your own software if you don’t know how to do it already. In fact, even if you have some coding skills, there is always more you can learn to improve your abilities.

There are several online websites that offer courses to teach you how to code.

Other Recommendations

To help you learn to code, it’s helpful to attend in person events. There are a variety of these that are open to beginners or experts. This will also help you meet like-minded people.

Practice your coding skills before applying them to your software business. Start with simple projects that are useful, so you get the experience of creating a product from idea to implementation. Work on projects every day to keep the knowledge fresh and your skills polished.

A non-technical person could learn to code and quick code the product for validation or MVP. Once the product has been validated, additional development expertise would be used to finish the product.

You Can Build Your Own Product

If you have the time, money, skills (or are willing to learn), and don’t plan to scale, then building the product yourself makes sense. Visit the websites listed above and sign up for a few courses to hone your skills, attend some in-person events to meet like-minded people, and practice your coding skills on small, simple projects to give you the experience needed for your success.

To find out more about learning to code, click here.

Applying Lean Principles to Iterate the MVP

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