Nailing Execution

Alexis Ohanian

Lesson time 08:03 min

Great ideas are worthless without execution. Alexis instructs you on how to test your idea in the simplest way possible before launching. Excessive delays or over-perfecting may indicate problems with your idea.

Students give MasterClass an average rating of 4.7 out of 5 stars

Topics include: Build Your MVP • Get The Reseources You Need For Success • Prioritize • Case Study: Executing


INTERVIEWER: How important is execution? - Execution is really not that important. Sorry, I'm just with you. [MUSIC PLAYING] Execution is everything. Ideas alone are worthless. What ultimately makes or breaks a successful business comes down to the nitty gritty of execution. A relentless focus on getting things done, on prioritizing the most important work and deprioritizing everything else in pursuit of building something really special. [MUSIC PLAYING] So the MVP is a weird acronym clearly created by people who are not into sports. It does not mean most valuable player. It means minimum viable product. And this is something-- I don't know who coined it-- but in startup land, this is the idea of the most basic version of your product that solves a problem. That's what makes it viable. It's the jankiest, earliest version of something that just works well enough. And it's something you can put in front of customers or users or potential clients or partners or what have you. And maybe they can click around with it, it does some basic functionality, and it gets you some idea of whether or not you're on the right track. Now the best case scenario is you have an MVP built, you get it in front of users, and they're willing to pay you money for it. You know, in the case of Instacart I was an early investor when this company was literally two drivers hired off a Craigslist and you could open the app, place and order, and then one of those two Craigslist drivers would get a notification on their phone, head over to the Safeway, fill out your order, and bring it to your destination. - Hey, Chris. - Hey. Yes. - Here's your groceries. - Perfect. Thank you so much. And that was Instacart, not even 1.0. 0.1. But it was the minimum viable product that showed us, look, this isn't just someone who has an idea. Hey, grocery delivery should be a solved problem as easy as just using your smartphone. The thing worked and that was enough. And that was enough to say, great, here's some money. Let's go build this into a multibillion dollar business one day. And it's special when you're actually putting something in a potential investors hand that works. And even if it's janky, even if behind the scenes or Wizard of Ozing it-- obviously, don't lie to anyone-- but that difference of that aha moment that a great MVP provides is everything. [MUSIC PLAYING] A founder today has more and more leverage than they did a decade ago because so many of the different components of even getting a business set up have been automated or semi-automated through software, or simply just made more efficient, right? Even something like payments. When we started right in 2005 and I made our first storefront where we sold merch, it was a very convoluted process just to get a PayPal button on the website so that people could make payments that way to buy a T-shirt. Today, within seconds, you can take a ...

About the Instructor

In 2005, UVA undergrad Alexis Ohanian envisioned a place online where users connect over subcultures—enter Reddit. That was only the start: From growing billion-dollar companies to championing female founders, Ohanian shaped culture. Now he wants to lead tomorrow’s innovators. Learn how to turn an idea into a startup with advice Alexis has shared with other entrepreneurs through his VC fund, Seven Seven Six.

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Alexis Ohanian

Reddit cofounder Alexis Ohanian teaches you how to turn an idea into a startup. Get the advice he’s shared through his VC fund, Seven Seven Six.

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