The Efficiency Trap — Building Fast vs Building Right

Hanisha Arora
2 min readMar 14, 2024

Every customer’s question: What Kind Of Product Are You Building?. But in the early stages, focusing solely on the vision can be a recipe for disaster. How can someone understand your GRAND vision if the product itself is still taking shape?

Building for the Wrong Reasons

If you move ahead in reading that article, you’ll find it taking you to another layer — Does your product represent your vision? Is it helping a good amount of people? But on the deeper level, the first question it’s asking is — Are you really spending time on building a product? The time you spend on the innovation of your product, rather than anything new decides if your end result will be the next YouTube or the next big YouTube channel. There’s a hell big difference in what’s building at the end.

This is why 34% of startups fail in their second year. It’s the year founders generally transition from the technical side to the strategic side. The shocking realization hits: the product they built doesn’t align with their vision anymore. It mutated! Why? Because early on, many teams get stuck in a “build first, ask questions later” mentality. They chase after the perfect product, a mythical creature that never exists.

The Firefighter Mindset and Ruined Weekends

This relentless coding creates a firefighting mindset. Deadlines become survival mode, pushing your team to spend their weekends debugging a product they didn’t even believe in. They call it “the ruined choice of frustration.” Combating stress is the stage 1 of making anything. Since the basic problem here was, you rushed at first to just build what “may” work. Validating is good but there’s a right way to do it, like this.

Bug-Filled Regrets

The end result? These bugs are like your monthly budget. It’s at the end of the long period you’ll get to know how much time they ate of your team. These bugs represent wasted hours that could have been spent on strategic development and innovation. But it’s too late. The only option left is regret.

Innovation Needs Room to Breathe

Products can’t be built effectively if the developers are constantly putting out fires. It’s like offering someone a fancy office when they haven’t eaten in days. Look at Google’s 20% time projects, where innovation thrives. True success comes from products that not only survive but learn and adapt on their own.

Yes, efficient development is important. But it shouldn’t come at the expense of building the right product. The key is to find a balance between innovation and execution. Remember to be the best closure in the market your product needs to learn to survive itself.

Originally published at on March 14, 2024.