Starting a Business With No Ideas
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Hi there, Guilherme here.
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I talk a lot about small and big businesses started by one person, but not so much about how you could start your own.
Ideas can be found everywhere. The question is how do you find the right idea that both solves and problem and is something you’d interested in working on? Ideas that are good and that you will enjoy pursuing. Because when you love the process, you will stay consistent despite setbacks.
That’s key to building a successful business. So let’s try and see how you can get there.
Passions, do you have any?
Pretty cliché, but it does touch on an important thing. Doing what you like. Because that is crucial for you to stay on your path.
Creating a business is hard. Don’t be fooled by all the clickbaity things you find on YouTube. They tend to show you the final result only or hide the process behind it.
There will be tough times when you will consider giving up. Those feelings can be powerful, and if you’re not doing something you like, you will most likely let them control you.
So, considering that, here are some ways to think about new ideas:
What do you already enjoy doing?
How do you spend your free time?
What do you talk about all the time?
Who or what inspires you in the world – and why?
At what moments do you completely forget about time?
If you could master one skill instantly, what would it be?
Start with this. You might be surprised by what you find.
What about strengths?
Knowing your strengths is key to achieving success. You will be able to understand yourself better, and pair with the correct people that complement you in the best way.
Besides, it’s no secret that most people tend to enjoy what they excel at. In other words, finding your strengths may uncover some new passions.
For some, it’s hidden in a specific skill, like coding or painting. For others, it’s hidden in their character traits. And while some are exceptional with people, others do their best work alone.
Here’s how you can find yours:
What were you naturally better at in school?
What do you do with ease that others struggle with?
What do others compliment you for?
Think about your strengths from different angles. For example, are you good with numbers? Very creative? Are you great with people? Are you accountable? Responsible? Ambitious? Good at money management? Or brilliant with computers?
Look for a purpose
Or, as Simon Sinek calls it, having a “Why”.
It can be the single reason that causes you to keep going, despite feeling unmotivated, lacking willpower, and wanting to give up.
A purpose is powerful. On top of that, finding your purpose may lead straight to the perfect business idea.
What skills and knowledge do you have?
When you want to start a business with no ideas, a good place to start is with your current skills and knowledge.
It’s often challenging to start a business in something you have no experience with. But you will find it easier to come up with ideas when you already have some knowledge and skills.
You can use that to develop your business experience and confidence. And you can use that to spiral up new ideas and start new businesses if that’s what you desire.
But what do you do if you lack skills or knowledge? Know that your skill sets translate to your business success.
So, the more skills you learn, whether those are skills like coding and marketing, or soft skills like communication and selling, determine your success.
Riches are in the niches
There are many, and I mean many, different business ideas and opportunities out there. And finding one that suits you is a matter of doing research and then trying stuff out.
Think about it: almost anything you can think off has a business around it somewhere in the world. Do your research, and you will have a business idea in no time.
Here’s where you can start:
Consultant (online) in any area of expertise;
Developer: freelance or building your own thing;
Commerce store: physical or online;
A personal trainer or gym owner;
Coaching or teaching of any kind;
Designers of all sorts;
A planning business;
A travel business;
A cleaning business;
Running your own Airbnb;
An (online) marketing business;
A sales business.
Do your research, explore the options, and soon you’ll have a great idea to start a successful business.
Read, watch, hear
Consuming more may sound counterproductive. But I’m not saying that you should watch more TV. Instead, you should deliberately choose what to take in.
Read non-fiction books on any topics. Dive into biographies of the people you admire. Watch documentaries about a range of things. Read blogs, watch YouTube videos, listen to podcasts, and explore everything.
Seek to understand a bit of everything. And then, dive deeper into what interests you to find a business idea.
Exploring a variety of topics is good advice in general. Not just for starting a business if you have no ideas but also for your personal life.
Creativity is bliss
You may not see yourself as creative, but all humans are. And there’s an easy way to prove that to yourself: come up with one business idea every day.
Why? It develops the habit of creativity. Starting with simple and common business ideas gets you into that way of thinking. Then, over time, business ideas appear everywhere you go.
And that’s when you come up with out-of-the-box ideas. That’s when creativity works its magic.
But until then, you will have to develop the habit. You have to stimulate the mind a little bit. After all, you only become good at something if you practice it.
Every successful business solves a problem. In fact, if yours doesn’t solve a specific problem, you will soon be out of business.
What problems have you encountered in your life? Which problems did you overcome?
For example, people who struggle with weight loss may become the best personal trainers. Why? Because they can relate to their clients and understand their pain.
If you want to start a business and have no ideas, think about the closest problems to your heart. What would you like to solve?
Build a community
You may already feel passionate about something but fail to see how to start a business around it. Or even if you see a path, it might involve many risks, like significant investments. But you can start risk-free.
Here’s a business idea that requires no capital. Something you can start from the comfort of your home. With nothing more than a keen interest in a specific topic.
And that’s to build a community first.
Before you have any idea about what to sell, why not build a community around your topic of interest first? Then, listen to your community and get them involved.
And then use their input to develop products or services. It’s a great model.
Think about YouTube or TikTok if you like creating videos, a podcast if you enjoy audio, or a blog if you enjoy writing.
For example, I talk about businesses run or started, by a single person. And while it doesn’t make money today, I focus on building a community first to learn more about them.
Besides, it’s a great learning experience, and I enjoy it. And with the knowledge gained, I might just start a completely different business.
With that being said, and following the old saying of “eat your own dog food”, I decided to create a Discord for this community. Join us, and let’s chat!
Look for inspiration
If nothing of the above made you stop and think about an idea, or got you going to build something, then this final step might help you out.
Find inspiration. Go and watch a handful of YouTube videos talking about business or ideas. Go and listen to a couple of podcasts around the same topic.
Lose a couple of hours on this. Not all at once, but at least once every day. Take notes, stop and think about what you’re learning. Is there anything you could do differently? Did you hear about something and maybe thought “Man, I would love to do that”? If so, get doing it!
Starting a business is hard, but not impossible.
I hope that I’ve inspired you to start. Understand who you are, and what makes you tick. And then teach yourself to come up with new business ideas every time. It’s all about taking action.
Perhaps you won’t find your perfect idea straight away. Many entrepreneurs start many businesses throughout their lives. Many of which fail.
But through these experiences, they eventually find the perfect one.
In other words, give this article some thought. Then, find something that you would enjoy. And start taking action.
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Until next time - Guilherme
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