Just Say No

9 September 2014

When you’re building software, you need to say no to most things.


>> Focus isn’t about saying yes to something.
>> It’s about saying no to hundreds of things.
>> I think we’re more proud of the things we haven’t done,
than the things we, we have done.
>> We didn’t do Google.
>> We didn’t do Pinterest.
>> Mm-hm.
>> We didn’t do anything successful.
>> We’ve never been part of anything profitable and

we’re super proud of that.
>> Software doesn’t have any physical borders.
>> Mm-hm. >> It can just keep growing and growing.
>> And that’s how it gets so bloated and complicated.
>> Yeah, when, when you’re building an app,
you’re going to want to say no to most things.
>> Yep features.
>> People.
>> Meetings.
>> Basic human emotions.
>> Showers.
>> Wait, you want to shower, maybe you keep showers in this.
>> Not one of those things, you need any of those things.
>> Just a light, just take a light rinse.
>> None of it.
>> You don’t need them.
>> When you’re building a product, it’s it’s like packing.
>> You’re going to want to plan for what you need, and
then [SOUND] remove half.
>> And then, [SOUND] remove half of that.
>> Right.
>> Then cancel your trip.
>> Yeah, you didn’t need to go to that place.
>> Why? >> You know just burn everything you own.
>> Mm-hm, set fire to all of it.
>> Yeah, that’s when you become really agile.
>> Yeah, you go on vacation you bring, you just bring a pair of socks and
that’s it.
>> One pair of socks.
>> One pair of socks.
>> So how do we handle feature requests?
>> We say thank you for sending this.
>> Mm-hm. >> We think it’s a great idea, and we can understand why you
would think that this is something that should be in the product.
>> But we’re not going to do that.
>> Instead, we’re going to do something else that your big,
fat pig head was too stupid to know it wanted in the first place.
>> You’re welcome, you dumb dumb.
>> Dumb, you dumb idiot.
>> No is easier to say, if you say it early.
>> It’s a lot harder to say no later in the game.
>> Here, watch, ask me a question.
>> Do you?
>> No.
>> How much would it?
>> No.
>> Would you like to?
>> No.

>> If I wanted to?
>> Nyet.
>> Okay, this isn’t fair.
>> Nein!
>> It’s not fair because you’re not letting me ask.
>> No, French.
>> You said ask you.
>> No, Spanish!
>> How can you even?
>> Bonk!
>> Caveman?
>> You can’t say no if I didn’t even get the full.
>> [SOUND] >> Let me at least.
>> [SOUND].
>> [MUSIC]
>> All right, this doesn’t seem fair.
>> Cha!
>> That’s Zulu for no.
>> Cha.
>> But what if?
>> Cha!

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