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HOT TOPIC How hard is it to actually find a good business idea?

How hard is it to find a good, plausible business idea?


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James Fend

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I have an excel that has each attribute I am looking for in ideas and then grade them. Some attributes carry more weight than others. A big one for me is:

1. Can I reach possible customers/users?
2. Will it be easy, hard, and/or through scalable methods?
3. Is this something I can write/talk about passionately?
 

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SpectateSwamp

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Listen to the workers.
When I was working on the Gravel Crusher.. in 1972
It required that I run the Breaker (big rocks to under 3 in)
and the Crusher. Those rocks into 3/4 in crush.

It was easy for the breaker to overload the crusher hopper and it would get clogged.
When the crusher was getting close to overload.. I'd run over (on scaffolding) and pull
a lever to stop more being crushed for a few seconds.. then back on.

The bosses came by one day and asked if there was anything I could use.
I said yes a 50 foot piece of rope and I'd tie it to the crusher lever to operate it
from the Breaker ...

50% more gravel crushed right away.
 

Entre Eyes

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LittleWolfie

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Well after reading the article, I do the what if a lot. What if this is my big break? I will be so happy. What if the hard drive fails? Well, I will restore from the backup I am about to make before I start or the one I'm going to schedule now I have nice new computer.

Other than that, I'm apparently problem solving and if I stop doing the what if, I will be less proactive and worse off.

I implement all the other suggestions too,sat morning is my worry time.
 

Kevin88660

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My opinion is this.

Most ideas will be rubbish even if they sounded good. Ideas are only good after they have been tested out and proven to be good. Sometimes it takes a few modification to the original idea to make it work.

Thats what makes the process hard.
 

LittleWolfie

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But at least you have some code.
That and a $1 is worth the dollar. I'm unable to eat the code, or sell /or rent code for a rent/food. Nor have I been able to use code to obtain a job or freelance work, it was just a complete waste of time.

I'd gladly give code away for some sales skill.
 

Process

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That and a $1 is worth the dollar. I'm unable to eat the code, or sell /or rent code for a rent/food. Nor have I been able to use code to obtain a job or freelance work, it was just a complete waste of time.

I'd gladly give code away for some sales skill.
Psst.... learning the process of learning to code showed me to look at sales as a programmable series of functions.

Now I sell things at the intersection of systems and sales... which happens to be where the real money always is at. Just a helpful hint.
 

Ing

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Read some books, try to get your mindset towards business and you ll see the opportunities yourself!

I read some books. At the end Millionaire fastlane.
Now I got forbidden to talk about business opportunities by my wife! :0
 

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LittleWolfie

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Psst.... learning the process of learning to code showed me to look at sales as a programmable series of functions.
OK,now we are getting somewhere, other than looking at each part of the sales funnel as a function that is #included in the main file, how do I do this?

How does this help me or the system sell?

Now I sell things at the intersection of systems and sales... which happens to be where the real money always is at. Just a helpful hint.
Do you mean like sales automation or more like a sales engineer?

@Ing

My issues with business books is most of them are too artisty/biographical for me to follow and gain insight. There is some useful information in MJ's, but lean startup, tyler tringas and the like take a much better (imho) scientific approach.

Things usally work much better for me when I ask other peiple their ideas.

However they all run on the assumption you have a certain amount of capital and live in a certain kind of location yet never highlight their assumptions at the beginning(there is a thread on here which does this to my delight) once I get to that stage it can be implementend.

However I have yet to find anything that applies to my specific situation.
 

Ernman

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My last business kinda came to me by accident, so I've never really experienced consciously going out and finding the next business to start, and so far, I'm failing at doing so.
Allow me to suggest the answer to your question is in your post. I've recently been through a similar situation. I knew it was time to get off the slow lane and had been casting around for ideas. But the idea was right in front of me the entire time. I just wasn't seeing it. It came to me by accident, all I had to do was recognize it.

I know I'm sounding philosophical, sorry about that. But my point is, our daily lives, work activities and experiences put us right in the path of needs all the time. Our challenge is to recognize them.
 

Process

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OK,now we are getting somewhere, other than looking at each part of the sales funnel as a function that is #included in the main file, how do I do this?

How does this help me or the system sell?



Do you mean like sales automation or more like a sales engineer?

@Ing

My issues with business books is most of them are too artisty/biographical for me to follow and gain insight. There is some useful information in MJ's, but lean startup, tyler tringas and the like take a much better (imho) scientific approach.

Things usally work much better for me when I ask other peiple their ideas.

However they all run on the assumption you have a certain amount of capital and live in a certain kind of location yet never highlight their assumptions at the beginning(there is a thread on here which does this to my delight) once I get to that stage it can be implementend.

However I have yet to find anything that applies to my specific situation.

Have you ever read the Pragmatic Programmer?

Understanding systems sets me apart when I train reps and associates to see what they’re doing as a system. The more simple it is the better.

First I teach them to just go for volume. Talking to buyers is the key.

Second I teach them to dig for pain, desires, frustrations, etc.

Third I teach them to look into eyes appropriately, the order of questions, the tone and body language.

Fourth I teach them to just ask for the order. If the customer stalls, they have to move back to addresss the underlying concern about value.

Fifth if the person still stalls, I instruct them to give the prospect their contact info stapled to a quote form with more info and specs on it. This actually gets a solid chunk of analytical buyers to recontact and place orders. ( It is important to give them more value than before you met them without wasting time since they deliberate for weeks sometimes) (these people are icing on the cake since I never count on any of them returning to the funnel)

Each iteration of applying this makes them much more calibrated. Proving this gives them the confidence and practice to massively improve.

This is more like a quick simple python script than a fancy bloated program.

I get the basics tested before I optimize the rest.
 

LittleWolfie

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Have you ever read the Pragmatic Programmer?

Understanding systems sets me apart when I train reps and associates to see what they’re doing as a system. The more simple it is the better.

First I teach them to just go for volume. Talking to buyers is the key.

Second I teach them to dig for pain, desires, frustrations, etc.

Third I teach them to look into eyes appropriately, the order of questions, the tone and body language.

Fourth I teach them to just ask for the order. If the customer stalls, they have to move back to addresss the underlying concern about value.

Fifth if the person still stalls, I instruct them to give the prospect their contact info stapled to a quote form with more info and specs on it. This actually gets a solid chunk of analytical buyers to recontact and place orders. ( It is important to give them more value than before you met them without wasting time since they deliberate for weeks sometimes) (these people are icing on the cake since I never count on any of them returning to the funnel)

Each iteration of applying this makes them much more calibrated. Proving this gives them the confidence and practice to massively improve.

This is more like a quick simple python script than a fancy bloated program.

I get the basics tested before I optimize the rest.
Yes, it was on the reading list at university, so I probably have a copy floating around somewhere. I was terrible at the excuse vs option thing because I can never identify when someone is making an excuse.

I remember the author had a name that rhymed with a rather crude genitalia reference.

I fail to see the point or the applicability, I'm hardly in a position to establish a system for training reps and associates.

I'd fail on the third step(I only have one tone,short of voice box/larynx surgery)

While I think, I understand the theory I am absolutely cluelwss on how to add in a value add way.
 

Process

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Yes, it was on the reading list at university, so I probably have a copy floating around somewhere. I was terrible at the excuse vs option thing because I can never identify when someone is making an excuse.

I remember the author had a name that rhymed with a rather crude genitalia reference.

I fail to see the point or the applicability, I'm hardly in a position to establish a system for training reps and associates.

I'd fail on the third step(I only have one tone,short of voice box/larynx surgery)

While I think, I understand the theory I am absolutely cluelwss on how to add in a value add way.

Ahh you’re in the over analysis frame of mind. It is common when I talk to engineers and techie types.

Yet the dedicated ones become the best at sales since they’re so systematic. Natural born closers take it for granted.

To learn to sell. Get your hands dirty. Find someone who is good at it and model yourself after them.

Focus on the points I was talking about one step at a time.

People buy when it helps them gain status, or evade pain.

The whole point of The Pragmatic Programmer really was to apply that mindset where programmers are scarce.

He doesn’t recommend literally being a code monkey in a code shop since those skills are common. They are uncommon in sales and small businesses.
 

LittleWolfie

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Ahh you’re in the over analysis frame of mind.

Yes i do that a lot.
It is common when I talk to engineers and techie types.

Yet the dedicated ones become the best at sales since they’re so systematic. Natural born closers take it for granted.

To learn to sell. Get your hands dirty

I have attempted to sell my skills (job) web design services, process automation, my product(stock market prediciton), office macro, other people's products (online food/drink for bars/clubs/cafes)

Find someone who is good at it and model yourself after them.
Do you know anyone? Or somewhere (local to me) I could find them? How can I even gaudge if they are good at sales or just a fake influencer/mlm type?

Focus on the points I was talking about one step at a time.
I'm still on the volume one, I never seem to get enough volume.

People buy when it helps them gain status, or evade pain.
Figuring out what the pain or status gain is where I am struggling at the moment.
 

Process

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It is common when I talk to engineers and techie types.

Yet the dedicated ones become the best at sales since they’re so systematic. Natural born closers take it for granted.




I have attempted to sell my skills (job) web design services, process automation, my product(stock market prediciton), office macro, other people's products (online food/drink for bars/clubs/cafes)



Do you know anyone? Or somewhere (local to me) I could find them? How can I even gaudge if they are good at sales or just a fake influencer/mlm type?



I'm still on the volume one, I never seem to get enough volume.


Figuring out what the pain or status gain is where I am struggling at the moment.

What do you do for a living right now? Does that place have a sales/marketing department..?


Pain saves people time and frustration. Status gives them money/makes it easier to get a mate.

Your only problem are you obsess over the details and come off a bit anal-retentive. I’ve seen far worse over come it, in fact I was that way at times.

Jumping into chaos gave me a track record to get hired in entry level sales. From there I just trained and got better day by day until I was headhunted away.
 

LittleWolfie

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What do you do for a living right now?
I
rregular low paid Warehouse work. I figured it was better than trying to claim now employers think it is all I can do.

Trying to find something better, 20 hours a week in an office enviroment paying between $88 a day(2 days) and $13715 per year(self employed) would be an awesome improvement and could finance my next phase.

It is actually far from a living,I can end up paying too work in some shifts due to the cost of transport. Fixed hours or remote work would be cheaper or eliminate that cost. I'm basically in a race against time to get a better job before my capital runs out,last year I failed.

Imagine if I could afford to attend networking monthly rather than once a year, or even weekly. If I could get to other larger towns or even Cambridge.

Does that place have a sales/marketing department..?
That was my first thought too.
Not on site, there is one down in London. No luck with linkedin to them and I have no company email/computer/phone to give me an advantage over another random and even if I could afford the trip, I have no ID for that site,so unlikely to get past the security hut.

Would probably have equal odds picking other companies.

Pain saves people time and frustration. Status gives them money/makes it easier to get a mate.
Of course no one wants to talk to me about their pains,no luck with my stock predicting software to add money.

Although that could have worked had I been able to subsidise the G&A overhead.

Your only problem are you obsess over the details and come off a bit anal-retentive.
My mind works in strange ways, I cam be very generic but then I never actually do anything but think. Or action orientated and obsess over the details.

The trick is to get me the right metric so I can find the detail. Is that grow user base by 5%? Make 100 cold calls of no longer than 5 minutes each while a/b testing two scripts then report?

Is it reduce salary expenditure on non revenue generating tasks performed by a salesperson? (Hint rescuepro + zaiper & sql server)

Is it build up the pipeline via net promoter surveys,establishing customer reviews and creating an inbound marketing blog for more anayltical buyers?

I’ve seen far worse over come it, in fact I was that way at times.
Awesome,I am working on it as best as I can at the moment. I suspect once I actually get started and grab some mentors I will be able to improve.

Jumping into chaos
gave me a track record to get hired in entry level sales.
Okay so given my circumstances how can I get hired to jump into chaos?

Heck I am already working in chaos,how can I use that to get ab entry level sales job? I see advertising for no experience needed recruiting jobs,yet to manage a reply though.

Fom there I just trained and got better day by day until I was headhunted away.
I'm all for training, just give me a regular day off and point to the courses/books(or I can find a mentor)

This is only effective when there is an actual career path be it upward or lateral moves to other functions or even the same job in other locations.
 

Process

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I
rregular low paid Warehouse work. I figured it was better than trying to claim now employers think it is all I can do.

Trying to find something better, 20 hours a week in an office enviroment paying between $88 a day(2 days) and $13715 per year(self employed) would be an awesome improvement and could finance my next phase.

It is actually far from a living,I can end up paying too work in some shifts due to the cost of transport. Fixed hours or remote work would be cheaper or eliminate that cost. I'm basically in a race against time to get a better job before my capital runs out,last year I failed.

Imagine if I could afford to attend networking monthly rather than once a year, or even weekly. If I could get to other larger towns or even Cambridge.



That was my first thought too.
Not on site, there is one down in London. No luck with linkedin to them and I have no company email/computer/phone to give me an advantage over another random and even if I could afford the trip, I have no ID for that site,so unlikely to get past the security hut.

Would probably have equal odds picking other companies.



Of course no one wants to talk to me about their pains,no luck with my stock predicting software to add money.

Although that could have worked had I been able to subsidise the G&A overhead.



My mind works in strange ways, I cam be very generic but then I never actually do anything but think. Or action orientated and obsess over the details.

The trick is to get me the right metric so I can find the detail. Is that grow user base by 5%? Make 100 cold calls of no longer than 5 minutes each while a/b testing two scripts then report?

Is it reduce salary expenditure on non revenue generating tasks performed by a salesperson? (Hint rescuepro + zaiper & sql server)

Is it build up the pipeline via net promoter surveys,establishing customer reviews and creating an inbound marketing blog for more anayltical buyers?



Awesome,I am working on it as best as I can at the moment. I suspect once I actually get started and grab some mentors I will be able to improve.



Okay so given my circumstances how can I get hired to jump into chaos?

Heck I am already working in chaos,how can I use that to get ab entry level sales job? I see advertising for no experience needed recruiting jobs,yet to manage a reply though.



I'm all for training, just give me a regular day off and point to the courses/books(or I can find a mentor)

This is only effective when there is an actual career path be it upward or lateral moves to other functions or even the same job in other locations.

My favorite sales book is called Just Sell The Damn Thing by Doberman Dan.

A retail sales job would pay the same as what you make. You should check out cell phone or computer service stores.

Those places have plenty of customers to practice on and experienced people to learn from. (My experience in America, the UK has a similar business environment)

That’s what my beginning in sales was. Just show a willingness to work the numbers and keep digging, that’s what they look for in entry level sales.
 

Matt Dassel

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I have a different perspective on ideas. The more simple, and the more they look like a one-time-need, there is a chance that you will have the most amount of them.

But for launching long-term businesses that can scale into millions is harder. I'm more convinced we're only getting there by accumulating many of these one-time-need ideas at a time. Figuring out how to make them a larger idea after you already got in.
 

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LittleWolfie

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My favorite sales book is called Just Sell The Damn Thing by Doberman Dan.

A retail sales job would pay the same as what you make. You should check out cell phone or computer service stores.

Those places have plenty of customers to practice on and experienced people to learn from. (My experience in America, the UK has a similar business environment)

That’s what my beginning in sales was. Just show a willingness to work the numbers and keep digging, that’s what they look for in entry level sales.
Sounds like your undervaluing your sales skills,I suspect you are much better at selling than I, if you were able to selll yourself for a retail job over all the competition.

I'm just told to apply online and then never here back.

I have a different perspective on ideas. The more simple, and the more they look like a one-time-need, there is a chance that you will have the most amount of them.

But for launching long-term businesses that can scale into millions is harder. I'm more convinced we're only getting there by accumulating many of these one-time-need ideas at a time. Figuring out how to make them a larger idea after you already got in.
Forgot millions,I will take 40k a year (profit)
 

Process

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Sounds like your undervaluing your sales skills,I suspect you are much better at selling than I, if you were able to selll yourself for a retail job over all the competition.

I'm just told to apply online and then never here back.

Retail's where I got started. I had no track record. Then I moved on to bigger and better margins(value).


You have to apply in person whenever possible. Sales is about your personality and ability to relate to people. If you can show the manager you understand they have a shortage of people who don't pull their punches, you can definitely get an interview.

Yes, they always try to tell you to apply online... that's when you ask them what positions they specifically need. Then you keep finding pain points from there. (hint high turnover.)

Forgot millions,I will take 40k a year (profit)
Your mindset is holding you back. Don't let yourself believe in shortage.

One small success begets another. The hardest part is getting started. Have you looked up @Andy Black 's posts? That's another solid suggestion for you...
 

Champion

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On one side, you dont want to start something that will be a waste of time / potentially unprofitable.

On the other side, overanalysis and paralysis is a true danger.

I suggest you start testing things using the "Kinetic Execution" model in MJ's book (Unscripted).

You shouldnt blow too much cash to test the things, but once you find something that works, just go with that?

Best
Champion
 

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