So you’ve always wanted to own your own business, but you’re not quite sure how you can make it happen? You’re wondering what business you’d start, if you ever got around to it, or if being a business owner is as great as you hope it will be. Maybe you’re even wondering if you have what it takes to be an entrepreneur. While I might not have all the specific answers you’re looking for, I can start you out in the right direction for the first question: What business would you start?
1. Entrepreneurs are problem solvers
People spend money on solutions to problems they don’t want to deal with anymore. Can you identify solutions (ie. possible business ideas) to the following problems?
- “I’m bored but don’t want to leave my house, please entertain me? – Insert Netflix.
- “I’m not in shape, please help me get summer-ready” – Hello,Weight Watchers.
- “I’m not happy with the way my wardrobe makes me feel. I want a better one but I don’t have a lot to spend on it” – Here comes Nordstrom Rack.
Each of the problems listed above gave attentive entrepreneurs some ideas on how they can make a lot of money. Do you recognize any of these problem solvers that we’ve grown to love?
2. The greater the problem, the greater the reward.
Some problems are easier to solve than others. The easier the problem, the more competitors you’ll have trying to solve it and the harder it will be to stand out in the crowd. Though it’s hard to stand out, you’ll get the reward if you prove you have a better solution.
The harder the problem, the greater the risk, and the greater the reward – The benefits of harder problems is less competition.
3. Problem solving takes a lot of research and systematic decision making.
Now that you’ve identified something that needs to be fixed, you need to take a second and decide if it’s worth fixing. Are people willing to pay for the solution you’ve come up with? How many such people are there?
Most problems have more than one solution – the best entrepreneurs find the best solutions by crossing out all other options after thinking them through. We call this the process of elimination.
Entrepreneurs focus on the problems they’re able to solve better than anyone else, you might not be able to solve every problem, but you only need to focus on the ones you can.
4. No solution can make any money unless you make it a reality
The difference between those that have great ideas and those that have successful businesses is execution. As the saying goes, “the road to hell is paved with good intentions.” People pay for solutions, not for good intentions and not for good ideas. Having a good idea doesn’t make you wealthy, making the idea work does.
We see so many problems every day, in every part of life; successful entrepreneurs are those who do something about it.
5. Conduct a reality check regularly and consistently
It’s important to check in frequently to see if you’re still solving a problem that people want solved, and to see if there are any other solutions out there that solve the problem better than you do. If there are, you’ll find all your customers are buying those solutions. As problems evolve over time, so should your solution – otherwise you won’t have any more problems to solve, and won’t get the reward you deserve.
So now that you’ve got a head start in determining what business ideas to consider, look out for our other posts to see if entrepreneurship is all that it’s cracked up to be and to see if you have what it takes to be an entrepreneur.