i truly believe that the hardest part about entrepreneurship is finding a good idea. yes, your brownies are good, but are they good enough? yes, fluffy is important to me, but does the world need another cat bed company? can i sell enough hand woven coffee cup sleeves?
the answer to these questions depends on three things:
1. will people buy it? we’ve discussed this in previous posts. you need to put your product out there. run some test batches and get feedback. anonymous feedback is best, because then people will really tell you how they feel. but most importantly remember not to ask your friends and family. they will tell you your idea is great and then talk about their crazy cousin over turkey and stuffing.
2. can i beat the competition? is there anyone else doing what you want to do? if not, why not: are you truly the first one to think of it, or is there a valid obstacle to entry and sustainability? if others are doing the same thing, how can you beat them? what will be your differentiator: how will you be better, faster, stronger? the answers to these questions must be solid before you take your idea to the next level.
3. does my business model fit my goals? you need to define your vision in order to evaluate whether your plan to get there is a good one. for example, if you want to be a nationally recognized brand with revenues of $100m/year, then making small batches of granola in your kitchen and selling them to a private label isn’t going to get you there. but making granola in a small kitchen can indeed be a dream come true – you just have to look inside to figure out how you currently define success.
entrepreneurship isn’t easy, but finding a good idea is far and away the most critical challenge. without it there is nothing.
(photo by ravi)