If you’ve always wanted to start your own business but haven’t hit on the right idea yet, don’t give up. There’s no guaranteed way to come up with a winning idea, but there are methods you can use to find the idea that works. And, it all starts with you.
What Do You Love to Do?
If money were no object, what would you do with your time? Would you tutor children? Would you work in animal rescue? Would you build birdhouses? What’s your dream life look like when it comes to being productive?
Now, take that dream and see if you can turn it into something real.
Owning your own business is a long-term commitment. It means working hard at it as you build it up and it means hard work down the road. If you don’t love what you do, you’ll burn out, and the business will fail.
What Do People Need?
Of course, your idea won’t work if it isn’t something people need. You may love building lighthouses out of Legos, but there probably isn’t much of a market for your masterpieces.
Like most successful entrepreneurs, Alex Perdikis, founder of Inride, discovered a segment of the population in his region that wasn’t being served. Inride meets the needs of a specific group of people who need transportation on a short-term basis without the hassles of owning and paying for their own vehicle.
Look within your community for a niche group whose needs are not being met.
What Makes You Angry?
Or, if not angry, what frustrates you through the course of a day? Can you think of a product or way of doing things that would make life easier?
For example, college student Colin Barceloux was frustrated about the high cost of textbooks. College students don’t have a lot of money. Why should they have to buy new textbooks when, in many cases, the same textbooks are required year after year? Barceloux started a textbook rental service for college students that reduced the costs of obtaining textbooks each semester. When he began his business, he was the only employee. Now he employs 200 and averages 1.5 million users.
Embrace those everyday frustrations, and you just might find a great business idea.
Ask for Feedback
Hit your family and friends up for ideas. Ask about services they’d like to see in your area. Find out what types of products they could use but can’t find.
Throw your ideas out to close friends and family and ask for their thoughts. Find people who’ll tell you the truth and give you honest opinions. You don’t have to follow their advice, but listening to the ideas of others and carefully considering their points gives you a new perspective.
Give It Time
Starting a business is both exhilarating and frightening. That’s why you have to think long and hard about your idea before moving forward.
Inspiration isn’t forced. In fact, sometimes the best business ideas come out of the blue when you’re not thinking about the problem at all. Take your time and explore different ideas. Think outside of the box. When the right business idea hits, you’ll be ready.