In order to come up with a great business idea—and for that idea to be successful—you need to follow three steps:
- Create a vision
- Determine your strengths and what you like to do
- Find a gap in the market and innovate
Let’s take a closer look.
Create a Vision
The best way to create a vision is to imagine how your life will be in the next three to five years. You should be as specific as possible and ask yourself these questions:
- Where do you see yourself living?
- How do you want to spend your days?
- What are you passionate about?
- Do you see yourself running a solo business or hiring employees?
- Are you surrounded by influencers and positive people?
- When you are not working, what do you do?
You don’t have to limit yourself to these questions, these are just examples for you to get started. The next step is to visualize the answers, believe that it can happen and write them down so you can read them on a daily basis.
This activity is essential as it allows you to think clearly and create a foundation from which come up with an innovative idea. It helps you make better business decisions and establish clear objectives and goals.
Determine Your Strengths and Identify Your Passions
In order to determine what your passions are, you need to dig deep within yourself to figure out your likes and dislikes. You may come up with a great business idea but it’s another thing to come up with one that you are passionate about—and passion is essential. Any business you start make you excited, determined and ambitious so you can grow it for the long term.
In order to figure out your strengths, you should make a list:
What You Are Good At?
Almost everyone has a skill set they are good at and can use as a foundation to start a business. You may be organized, have interpersonal skills or even be good at fixing things by hand.
A good exercise to do is to ask your family and friends to make a list of things they believe you are good at and then compare that list with the one you made about yourself and note the similarities. You can then further break down those qualities and assess what type of business you can start with that skill set.
Skills You Have Acquired
You may have acquired many skills over time by working for a company, from school or even side jobs you may have done. Make a list of all the responsibilities you had and determine how you can provide it as a service to help other people who lack that particular skill.
For example, if you are proficient in Excel and pivot tables you can teach other people how to work on it.
The Things You Like To Do
Make a list of 10 things you are good at and enjoy doing. Your hobbies and interests can also bring out fresh and new business ideas. Build on your list and study it daily, narrowing down the points. See how you can turn those passions into an idea for a business.
For example, if you are an artist and love to draw superhero characters, you can create caricatures of people and build that into a business.
Find A Gap In The Market
The first two steps were focused on what you can provide and what you are good at. The third point is for you to look outward to discover a gap that your service or product can fill in the market.
There are hundreds of articles that focus on the “Hottest new business ideas” or “Top 10 ideas to start,” but the best ideas will always come from you and will be based on what the market needs.
You should always look out for new business opportunities that can solve a problem that people face on a daily basis. Once you start a business based on this concept, you can become successful very fast.
To further assist you, I have come up with a worksheet that can help you with a business idea based on what the market requires:
Research the market and keep your eyes open to new possible unfilled opportunities.
- Read newspapers and magazines
- Network and interact with people in your area
- Go to the mall and visit local shops and see what difficulties they are facing
- Recreate an existing business model that is successful in another country
- Simplify an existing product or service
What products or services would you want that you haven’t been able to find in your city/country?
Can you create a product or service that would make life easier for people?
What are the newest business trends in your country?
Do you find gaps in the market that you can fill with your skill? List these gaps.
Most countries suffer from unemployment. A good idea would be to gather a team of unemployed individuals with different skills, i.e. graphic design, marketing, sales, website development etc. and start a consulting business by providing these services to companies.
Always be specific when writing down potential business ideas. Focus on a niche that has not been tapped into. The more niche your service, the more you will be successful.
I love hearing about new business ideas and the way people innovate. If you got a cool idea I would love to hear from you.
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Safwan Khan is the founder of Startupily and also has an App & Website development company. He consults with several small businesses and is always working to build new passive incomes.