Which is better: 12 projects in 1 year OR 1 all-in project for 12 months?

I've seen creators who throw a ton of spaghetti at the wall and eventually do great; while others spend inordinate amounts of time and money on one path - also to reach success eventually.

I know both can work, but it depends on the type of person or creator you are.

For the average joe/jill - which do you think is a better path?

Fast, short projects?
Big, in-depth one?

Would love to hear pros cons to both, along with any examples you can provide!

What's a better path to success?
  1. 12 projects
  2. 1 project
  1. 1

    12 projects over 1 because it will force you to be creative and figure out everything in more or less a month. Human mind work in a weird way and figure out things quickly when there is a deadline. So it makes sense to have strict deadlines.

    Also working on a single project might be risky. You never know whether there is a real demand for the product and you might just be wasting all your time in building something only to know no one wants it.

  2. 1

    Think each of the options would end up optimizing for different things.

    If you're creating 1 project each month, I'm sure you'd get really fast at building out and quickly launching a product. You'll know how to find tools easily. You'll know how to re-use components quickly. You'll know how to perform initial outreach.

    But I think that all of the harder problems with a project come out after the 1-month phase. It takes longer than a month to validate product-market fit. Almost everything related to creating a functional growth strategy is going to take longer than a month. If you're a software engineer, the biggest gaps in your knowledge likely exist in the parts past the 1-month building phase.

  3. 1

    As a dev, 12 projects because I am always working on something new.

    As a product manager, I would want at least 1 month to just talk with people about their problems or desires.

  4. 1

    Going deeper on a project will give you more insight into new markets and new needs.

    1 month is really surface level -- you will likely not find product-market fit in that span, but more importantly, you won't have any deeper insights into your problem space.

    If you are going to spend a month on 12 projects, that month should be spent becoming your customer. Do the thing your customer wants to do for a month, become a part of their community, spend the month really integrating yourself into their mindset, understanding their struggles and needs.

  5. 1

    Doesn't matter really if it's 12 or 1.

    I voted 12 just because you'd maximise your chances of something having product market fit.

    Which is what is important over here. If you build 1 and have no market, doesn't matter how much you focus on it. If you build 12 and have no market, same outcome.

    Going to market faster can tell you if there's traction for your product. I'd always say that's the way to go. If you focus on something that you think has a market but doesn't (which is the case with most startups), you're losing one full year building something that ends up nowhere.

    1. 2

      I don't agree with this. its unlikely to get product market fit with the first version of your product. You need to talk to users and iterate... maybe many times. A month is a joke of a time to think you can build a product that will be successful.

    2. 1

      On the other hand, if you do proper market research and you bootstrap your way with one single idea, talking to your users and iterating through the product, that works too. Even better I'd say.
      The key is pushing to market as fast as possible to validate your idea and see if there's a need for it.

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