Business Management Tips

Be Embarrased. Reid Hoffman Said So.

If you're not embarrassed, you're too late. Reid Hoffman.



“If you’re not embarrassed by the first version of your product, you launched it too late.”

Reid Hoffman (Founder of LinkedIn)


I heard this first at a conference. I was at the end stage of a 2 year project to relaunch a major retailer’s ecommerce site. The truth hit me in the face. I was sitting embarrassed that we hadn’t launched sooner!

Of course at the time, everyone had been working so hard, the brand had to protected, the customer experience needed to be slick. It had to be right. So we kept at it. Every time we tried to launch, something wasn’t ready. People cancelled leave so many times because it was a “new” go live date. As a result, no-one took leave for almost 2 years and everyone was burnt out, hating the project.  

In the end, I just said “F@#$ it. We are going to take this thing live, with or without the bells and whistles….this weekend!” In my teams faces I could see fear, anxiety, excitement and most importantly, relief.



And so we did, and it was fine. Too fine. I wish I had been more embarrassed by the first live version. It would have meant we got to market earlier and from there we would have prioritised customer experience ahead of stupid corporate bullsh*t that kept holding us up.

You know the story. I’ve written about it before. Have courage. Just start. One of the beauties of being an entrepreneur is that you have more control, so own it.  Launch early. Reid Hoffman said so (and he’s done pretty well). I promise you it will be a better dinner party story than this.



I’ve spent the last 10 years working in digital marketing and ecommerce. I’ve been the agency, the client, and lectured and trained 1000’s of people. I have a passion for training and development, smart, simple marketing...and running and wine...not at the same time :)