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Episode Info: Filip Valicia develops products for underwater robots and many other applications. He has also painstakingly laid out the process for you to develop your product. You can see this process at his website, The Product Startup. He also helps those crowdfunding a product – which is how I discovered his service. Filip escaped from communist Czechoslovakia, with his mother, when he was six years old. His fate, as a product developer guru was set into motion, when he was in a Greek refugee camp. One day, he found a discarded toy truck, with a missing back axle.  He found some other parts, from a discarded toilet and fixed it, pulling the toy truck behind him everywhere to carry his worldly possessions. Filip is a fantastic role model for anyone struggling to find their way in life. Growing up in Houston there was no support system of a Czech community. They didn’t have family or clan to lean on, didn’t have money to even get decent clothes so he could fit in at school, and really, felt like he was a failure even through college. But he kept pushing through, focused on developing a process that works regardless of his circumstances, always keeping the long game in mind. He shares: “All of your failures. All the things that you think you shouldn’t have done. I look at that as a data point.  It’s information you can use to make a better decision in the future. You are a wiser person now, than you were a year ago, because of having gone through that.  I’ve gone through so much, that there is little that can phase me, because of all the trials that I’ve had to go through. You have to physically experience through that pain, or triumph over that pain. Think of the longer term anyway, and continue plowing forward and it will make you stronger, and it will broaden your skill set. I get super frustrated sometimes because I’m not an expert in any one field, but at the same time, I can be more resilient, and I can act faster because I can do things on my own, and I can have a second or third job doing all sorts of random things, as opposed to people who haven’t made those mistakes as opposed to people who haven’t made those mistakes and haven’t learned those skills.” It starts with understanding who your customer is.  He shares his difficulties and the tactics he’s using to continually discover his audience and tRead more »

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