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, 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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