The pivot

**by Caroline O’Connor and Perry Klebahn Article

Silicon Valley culture is built around great pivots — a sudden shift in strategy that turns a mediocre idea into a billion-dollar company.

Groupon began not as a local coupon business, but as a platform for collective action. Pay Pal started back in 1999 as a way to “beam” money between mobile phones, Palm Pilots, and pagers. Twitter was born from a stalled podcasting startup.

At the Stanford d.school, the ability to pivot is essential to the process we teach in our Launchpad course, an introduction to entrepreneurship in which each student launches a real company, taking it from an idea to revenue in 10 weeks. Even in that extremely short timeframe, abrupt turns are inevitable. The ground rules for fluidly shifting course — or, when needed, radically altering direction — apply equally well to start-ups outside the classroom, as well as to innovative ventures within established companies.

Here are our five rules for executing a successful pivot:”  – Article

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