Sprint by Jake Knapp

Awesome book, buy it. Here’s a taster…

It’s a freezing December day, overcast and blustery. Two cofounders lean close to each other and exchange a few words. One week ago, their last prototype failed, but they think they know why. They’ve made a few fixes, and this morning, both men feel confident. After more then three years of building and testing, their crazy long-term goal might be within reach.

A cutting twenty-mile-per-hour wind curls fine spray off the sand. Most people would say the weather sucks, but the two men hardly seem to notice. If their prototype fails, they’ll still learn something, and they know that only five people will see it happen. They make the final preparations and check in with the observers. It’s time to begin.

And it works. For twelve glorious seconds, everything goes right. Their second test is another success, and the third. Hours after beginning, they run the fourth and final test of the day, and boom! Four-for-four. In the last test, the prototype works for a full fifty-nine seconds, and the cofounders are elated.

It’s 1903, and Orville and Wilbur Wright have just become the first humas to fly a powered aircraft…

The Wright brothers started with an ambitious, practically crazy goal. At first, they didn’t know how to get there. So they figured out which big questions they needed to answer…

For the next few years, they made progress by staying in a prototype mindset. One step at a time, they isolated challenges and broke through obstacles. Could they get enough lift? Would a person be able to keep the aircraft steady? Could they add an engine? Along the way they crashed. A lot. But each time, they used a new prototype purpose-built to answer one specific question. They remained fixed on the long-term goal, and they kept going…

Forming a question, building an experiment, and running a test became a way of life… Sprints [focuses] can create those habits in your company.

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