I'm Mike Sims and I teach entrepreneurs how to build startups using lean methodology. Ask me anything!

Mike Sims
Jun 23, 2018

I am the owner of ThinkLions, a Detroit-based agency that offers several services to startup entrepreneurs including business plan writing, pitch deck design, pitch consulting, mobile app development and more. I work with entrepreneurs each and every day, teaching them how to progress their fantastic app ideas into consumer-ready products and how to raise funding to bring their apps to the market, and developing strong marketing plans to help them reach their target audiences.

Creating a startup can be risky if you don’t really know what your customers are truly looking for. Lean startup methodology helps startups develop in an agile manner while validating all of their consumer assumptions along the way. If done correctly, using lean startup principles can considerably minimize your risk when entering the market and maximize your chances of success.

Want to know something about how to create an app?

Confused about how to create a startup?

I’d love to help! So, ask me anything!

What is the Vibe of this AMA? What is AMA Vibe?

This AMA has finished, no more comments and questions can be posted and votes submitted to those. Check other similar AMAs here or host your own AMA!

Conversation (30)

In three easy steps and under a minute you could be hosting your own AMA. Join our passionate community of AMA hosts and schedule your own AMA today.

Let's get started!

What are the things most people overlook when they are creating a startup?
Jun 29, 11:32PM EDT0
Under what circumstances have you personally had to adjust or pivot your ideas to ensure your startup's well being?
Jun 29, 12:56PM EDT0
Are agile and lean methodologies considered interchangeable, a subset of another, or completely different?
Jun 29, 5:02AM EDT0
What three pieces of advice would you give to college students who want to become entrepreneurs?
Jun 29, 2:53AM EDT0
What is Six Sigma? How do you advise startups to implement it in their work?
Jun 28, 9:47PM EDT0
If you have multiple clients at once with similar ideas for startups , how do you handle this dilemma?
Jun 28, 2:44AM EDT0
Entrepreneurs usually don't have a lot of capital for their startup. Why would they choose to direct their funds into hiring your services? What do you promise to offer them that they won't get themselves?
Jun 27, 6:25AM EDT0
Which founders or startups do you most admire right now?
Jun 25, 12:37PM EDT0
What strategies have you developed to help your customers market their apps efficiently?
Jun 25, 11:00AM EDT0
How does an entrepreneur find the constraint in his start-up and isn’t marketing getting attention a natural constraint of any start-up?
Jun 25, 9:48AM EDT0
What made you start ThinkLions- was it a personal passion, or a problem you identified, or a market opportunity?
Jun 25, 6:13AM EDT0
Why do startups embrace 'lean startup' but deride others who are experts in the field of lean methodology?
Jun 23, 11:55PM EDT0
How do you deal with security issues while creating mobile enterprise apps?
Jun 23, 10:43PM EDT0
Why is the wireframing and blueprinting stage essential to get an efficient app development?
Jun 23, 9:39PM EDT0
What are the examples of the problem that many entrepreneurs who don’t use Lean Startup methodology are experiencing?
Jun 23, 7:52PM EDT0
What are the things that most entrepreneurs get wrong when creating their startups? How can you help them avoid these pitfalls?
Jun 23, 2:48AM EDT0
What are some of the biggest challenges that startups and developers face while developing mobile apps using lean methodology?
Jun 22, 3:25PM EDT0

There are many challenges that startups will face, the biggest of which is probably funding. One thing about building, testing and validating is --- it costs money. The more testing you do, the more you can validate, but the more it will cost. 

At some point most startups (especially those using lean startup) will likely need to secure some type of outside funding to continue their journey forward. Doing so can be difficult; some investors aren't lean startup savvy and may wonder how you've spent so much already without any monetary return. 

Another challenge is when your assumptions can't be validated and you have to pivot. It can be hard to let go of your original idea and pursue what the market is really demanding. Our ideas are like our "babies". We want them to be right, but unfortunately, sometimes our assumptions aren't correct and we need to adjust our businesses as a result. 

Jun 22, 8:19PM EDT0
Delivery of rich mobile content eats up a lot of bandwidth, any suggestions on how to deal with this situation?
Jun 22, 6:01AM EDT0

How do you apply the lean methodology for tech startups? What are the key areas that you focus on?

Jun 22, 5:51AM EDT0

The first step would be to fill out a business model canvas, which will allow you to better assess where you currently stand. If done properly, you should be able to look at your business model canvas (or your one you've developed for a competitor) and get valueable insights about your business and customers. 

Look at the "Key Features" area. Try to minimize that section so it only includes a few features, just enough to prove that it is "viable". Start there -- build it, launch it, send users to it, measure their behavior, and learn as much as you can. Adapt your business model canvas to reflect your findings and repeat the cycle over and over again..... Realistically, this process never ends - even when you think your product is perfect, it will only be perfect for a moment, and then you'll have to figure out what to do next to keep your customers happy and excited about your product. 

Jun 22, 8:32PM EDT0
How do you choose a development technology while creating a mobile app? Do you discuss it with clients or simply follow your own lead?
Jun 22, 2:54AM EDT0