Enthusiastic entrepreneurs can be some of the most exciting people in the world. Their enthusiasm drives their business, the ideas they produce can improve even the worst problems, and the thirst to solve problems is unquenchable. These are the people that would agree that there is a method to implementing a new idea, and building a business around it. Although there is not a clear, concrete method that works for all, there is definitely a general direction that works well. Here's how Salt Lake City Bookkeeping feels it goes.
Write It Down
Writing an idea down will not only put it on paper, so you can think it out later, but it will also make sure that the idea isn't lost. Your last multi-billion dollar idea was probably lost to thin air.
Conduct Market Research
Market research can help to make sure there is a want for the product or service. Without having a little bit of market research, it's difficult to understand whether it's going to be worth the investment. Google has great resources with their keyword planner. However, it doesn't typically help with something innovative. Checking current psychographics of a target audience can help. Start checking with the Census, if nothing else.
Plan, But Not Too Much
Eric Reis talks about the MVP in his book Lean Startup. The MVP is the minimum viable product, or in other words, what the least state your product can be in before you can sell or provide a solution to a potential client's problem. Many businesses fail because they put too much time and effort into making everything perfect. Make something good enough and put it out in the market. Gather feedback and rework it. Your early adopters will help you perfect your product or service naturally.
Execution of the plan can be difficult. This is where everything must go on the line: reputation, humility, jobs, etc. There's a great chance that you'll make mistakes and not do everything perfect. But it's the best way to learn. Successful entrepreneurs are great at failing and learning from their mistakes. You have to fail several times before you can succeed. The biggest failure is never starting at all.
After the launch or product introduction, there's a chance that the market will either completely reject it, or only a few of the early adopters will make use of it. Great entrepreneurs understand how to pivot. It's a matter of gathering information from followers and understanding why they have not yet made a purchase. The greatest skill for an entrepreneur to have in the stage is the ability to listen. Interpret the results and pick a path. Pivot, and go for it.
Stay the Course or Abort
After you have come up with the idea, conceptualized and made the MVP, introduced it to market, then made a pivot, the main mission now is to evaluate again and stay the course or abort. Sometimes it's easy to fall in love with an idea, and as a company gets older, it becomes more difficult to give up. So this is the best time to realize whether it's worth the time and financial investment, or if it's something that needs to be aborted.
Starting a business is one of the most aggressive, but rewarding things someone will ever do with their life. Having a strong team in place, people you can trust and that believe in the mission, will be the proof of whether the company will win or not when decisions become difficult. If your CFO, board, and investors are telling you it may be time to hang up the hat, it might be good to listen. However, it may just be a signal that it's time to pivot.
There are resources and services out there to help you. Salt Lake City Bookkeeping is one of them. Feel free to reach out.