While, I feel building an MVP is a good idea because we can get feedback from the customers on what to improve, I have a doubt.
One fear that is stopping me from building an MVP is that if it turns out to be a good idea, then competitors might arise and then build a complete product. Users then might shift to that competitor because our Minimum viable product is lacking a lot of features.
If we get such a problem, it would be very hard to rectify because as a start up we don't have enough resources or team members to turn a minimum viable product into a complete one quickly. In the meantime, larger companies could implement it and our start up might vanish.
Kindly reply to me.
If your future solution for a problem is valid (meaning: the problem exists, and your product solves it) then it's high time to start working on your MVP. But if it is not valid do not invest anything in it.
Having an MVP does not mean that you have to show it to somebody. It means you've invested your time/money to create a version 0.x .
I think you don't need to be afraid of somebody stealing your product because of the following reasons:
I would definitely start to show my product to people. First to 10 people then 20, 40, 80 etc.
I would do it slowly not because somebody will steal my idea, but because the first version will be definitely buggy and/or will missing features. And I don't want to answer to the same bug-report or feature-requests 100 times...
Good luck with your product!
This is a common fear amongst new entrepreneurs (and more experienced ones no doubt). It is the same fear which stops people talking about their idea to anyone for fear of them stealing it.
The truth is most people probably wither don't care or don't understand what you are proposing. Larger companies have plenty of their own issues to solve and solutions to implement without having to steal yours as well. For an example of just how bad they can be at implementing new ideas even when the survival of the company depends on it try reading The Innovators Dilema.
Jason Cohen amongst others talk about this, for example http://blog.asmartbear.com/stealth-mode.html You should build your MVP and talk to your customers. Focus on building what they need to solve their problems and not worry about the competition.
MVP is an iterative product development strategy. Although it is one that makes a lot of sense from a development perspective because you won't be spending time on unnecessary features, it is not the only strategy. One could also consider for example, the complete opposite pole, namely building a Cathedral.
That being said, I believe one doesn't need to make the MVP public. You can build an MVP and approach a carefully selected list of early adopters, who probably will not compete with you, and deploy the MVP to them and collect feedback.
Another important issue is the type of software. If it is a software for IT crowd, it is highly likely that your early adopters have the in-house capability to build a competitor product. If your early adopters are ,say, lawyers, they will rather prefer to benefit from being an early adopter, and they will not immediately consider copying the idea.