Everything begins with an idea, however the value of an idea lies within its execution and the anticipation of what it may blossom into. Budding entrepreneurs, creative thinkers and innovators are constantly coming up with new ideas, most often stemming from extensive research, to develop solutions to common problems that plague society today. The idea is but the seed in the lengthy process of creating a new market opportunity and successfully converting it into a business. The question that arises most often is whether or not to pursue an idea. Is the idea worthy of further consideration? Does the idea satisfy a consumer requirement, does it cater to an untapped market segment, and furthermore is it solving a particular problem? Or is it a result of research and development, something so unique and advanced that the need for it hasn’t arisen yet, and the market is completely uncontested. The task of sifting through potential business ideas is extremely daunting because it is impossible to be completely sure of the markets response. There is no formula that is going to provide you with a certain outcome. An entrepreneur needs to be dynamic, courageous and confident but at the same time prudent and rational. The most important factors to consider include
– Availability of funds (capital)
– Availability of space (land)
– Availability of people (labor)
– Availability of machinery and materials
– Market space and growth rate
– Political, Economic, Social, Technological, Environmental and Legal factors (external environment )
According to an article published by Forbes Magazine in 2012, when making a decision to surge ahead, one must also take into consideration the following-
1. Creating a strong business plan – Planning is one of the most crucial steps to success. Very often, entrepreneurs forget their original purpose and lose the plot somewhere along the way. It is therefore imperative to draw up a comprehensive business plan that states exactly what the business is (the idea), attainable goals and objectives, vision of the business and the means for achieving the same. This will allow entrepreneurs to address their strengths as well as their shortcomings, especially when making a pitch to venture capitalists, angel investors, banks and other financial institutions. The advice and guidance given by these financial experts eventually decides the fate of the business.
2. Sharing your idea – ‘ The Darwin ‘ is a concept coined after Charles Darwin who did not shield his ‘theory of evolution’, on the contrary shared it with scientists, journalists and friends before revealing it to the public. The concept states that one should communicate, share and circulate an idea, so that it evolves into something more tangible, rather than trying to protect it in fear of it being stolen. Not everyone is out there to steal your idea; in fact idea generation is a cakewalk in comparison to what lies ahead. Once the idea has enough substance to it the decision of whether to pursue can be made easily.
3. Trusting your gut – This is something that occurs very naturally and intrinsically within an individual. Belief in ones own idea is crucial to success. Investors might not believe in the vision, family and friends may think it is too idealistic; the whole world will have opinions that could potentially render it as useless, and for that reason trusting oneself is important. If however, the Entrepreneur doesn’t feel certain and is skeptical, it is an obvious red flag.
4. Taking the risk – Entrepreneurs are known to be the risk takers, the ones who take a leap of faith and plunge into the unknown. However it is important to understand the nature of risk that is being taken. Taking a risk does not always pay off, it is a huge gamble.
Ideas always provide the required kick-start. Every business blooms and flourishes only after the process of idea generation. It is the product of a combination of several elements. Don’t underestimate the power of any idea because you never know if it will be worth it.