Week Zero – Why is it Necessary?
Having an idea is just the beginning, it is crucial to validate that idea. In order to validate an idea, we must first identify the problem, solution, and need/demand for said solution.
The best idea usually stems from a need that requires a solution, not a solution in search of a need.
At Bitsapphire, we will work with you (the client) to break down and analyze your idea. This will allow all of us to better understand your idea’s potential and its real-world functionality. Our onboarding process will help us recognize inconsistencies and prospective changes early on in our working relationship.
Here at Bitsapphire, we have named this onboarding process “Week Zero.”
During the “Week Zero” process you will work closely with our team to evaluate every aspect of your idea, especially from a potential users’ point of view.
While this process is called “Week Zero”, since it is the beginning of our working relationship, the entire process usually takes 2-4 weeks. Each Week Zero session that we conduct treats a single issue, in order to discover the unknowns of a project and a business model.
Here is an outline of what you can expect during each part of “Week Zero”:
Day 1: BrainDump & “Killing the Baby” Session
The first day will consist of a BrainDump and an exercise we’ve nicknamed “Killing the Baby.”
This session is partially unstructured. First, we will ask questions, then you (the client) will take it from there; explaining your idea and any relevant information.
Entrepreneurs are usually very particular about their ideas. You want to nurture your idea and make it a reality, it’s your baby.
However, it is our job to try to get a viable plan out of your idea. At Bitsapphire, we intend to flush out your idea objectively and determine its flaws, potential, and longevity. Typically, during a “Killing the Baby” session, we will try to identify gaps in your idea in order to formulate a stronger overall plan.
Tools: A live call via Google Meet Channel.
Day 2: MindStorming Session
After Day 1, we move on to the MindStorming phase for the next three days.
The three MindStorming sessions will cover:
- Problem Space
- Stakeholder Space
- Solution Space
A. Problem Space (Day 2)
The first MindStorming Session is the Problem Space.
During this session, we will compile a list of problems. This will identify all the problems that you want to solve with your idea.
Via a google drive document we will ask your team to write down a list of problems. Each one of the participants (from the client’s team) will be asked to write as many as they can think of in one minute. This process is repeated 5-6 times until an adequate list of problems is compiled. After each round, we’ll go and discuss them one by one.
Flushing out a problem can be challenging. It can be tempting to focus on the wrong part of the problem or look at the problem too broadly. Our job is to help you understand the problem and break it down into its simplest form. That’s why this session is an essential step toward validating an idea successfully.
After the next two MindStorming sessions are completed, these problems will be compared to the Stakeholder list and Solution Space List.
Tools: A Shared Google Drive Document and a Live Call on Google Meet.
B.Stakeholders (Day 3)
Now that we have a list of problems, we will compile a list of Stakeholders on the Google Drive Document. The methodology of work remains the same as with the Problem Space Session.
You should know WHO has the problem you want to solve, and how it is being dealt with now (without your product/idea being built). We can’t implement a solution without knowing what we’re going to solve, and for whom. We need to know the problem and the persona, and only then do we choose a specific solution & development part.
On this day, we also will ask you to locate possible Stakeholders that can be interviewed over the course of the upcoming week.
C. Solution Space (Day 4)
Now that you have several problems and Stakeholders in mind, we will list all the ways a solution can be reached. How can these problems be solved?
- Technical Solutions
- Legal Government Solutions
- Social Solutions
We will work on a Google Drive Document, just as we did previously, and write down all the solutions that we can think of. After the first round, we will give you feedback on how to phrase those solutions, and slowly we’ll get on the same page.
Day 5: Reflection Day
By analyzing the Mindstorming sessions, we will create a diagram. The diagram will consist of the following information:
- Removal of duplicated Problems, Stakeholders, and Solutions from the list.
- Division and creation of different groups within the Problems, Stakeholders, and Solutions, from each previous Mind Storming Session.
- All groups on the diagram will be analyzed and compared to one another. Then, out of the web of hundreds of connections, we’ll get down to maybe a dozen.
Documentation: Depending on the connections made in the diagram, we’ll follow up with a hypothesis. This hypothesis will be written on a document and discussed with the client. We will also test these hypothetical connections during the Stakeholder interviews. From the results of the interviewee’s answers, we’ll see which of the hypothesis makes the most sense. The interviewees’ input will help us prove or disprove the hypothesis.
One to two days consists of diagram and documentation. After this, we conduct a follow up discussion with you & your team.
Interviews will help us accomplish these three key main points:
- Test our hypothesis and assumptions.
- Compare the problem we’ve identified with the customer’s problems/his concerns.
- Validate market demand.
During the interviews, we will be looking for which problems the interviewees point out without being told what to say or what to think. We need to know how their lives and behaviors will be impacted by this potential product.
Furthermore, we will compare the Stakeholder problems to the list that you gave and determine if there are shared problems. If that is the case, we will decide which one is the most essential. We will then analyze the required resources necessary to implement any of our valid hypothesis. We will determine which is the best solution for that specific problem.
After we conduct and analyze the information we will compile the most important data in a Google Drive Document, along with the possible solution alternatives. Next, we will conduct a detailed discussion with you regarding each point.
The Value of Week Zero
In order to understand “HOW” to unlock the right solution out of so many options, we must first understand “WHAT” the problem is, and WHO is impacted by that specific problem.This is an unavoidable part of the process if we are going to unlock all of the answers and the early risks in your business model.
Week Zero is an iterative process, due to it being dependent on each individual idea. Ultimately, it depends on the idea if it is validated or not at the end of Week Zero. Sometimes, there are needed changes and modifications that may require an additional installment of a previous Week Zero session.
The Week Zero Process is unique, just like your idea.