Eyes rolled and groans were muttered last night at the closing session of the first day of Eric Ries’ Lean Startup Conference. For the Monday finale, Ries brought four employees and executives from General Electric — yes, the giant bureaucratic corporation that makes your dishwashers and air conditioners — to talk about the company’s innovative endeavors.
Needless to say, entrepreneurs in the audience were skeptical. After all, many had joined the startup community to escape the death grip of corporate bureaucracy. What could General Electric, a 276.85b market cap company with approximately 305,000 employees in 106 countries globally, possibly teach the audience about startups?
The answer was “not much.” At least at the moment.
General Electric says it has 100 products in the pipeline that have been created and tested using Eric Ries‘ popular Lean Startup method. But only one is ready to go into production right now, hitting 10 stores next week…
Stop the presses because, shocker: it’s a fridge. An all-metal fridge with no plastic on the inside, which apparently is super innovative and a bonkers experiment for the fridge industry.
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