Picking the right business can be tricky. There is a reason most new businesses fail within the first five years. And there is also a reason why a few businesses become successes and live beyond the dreaded five year anniversary. Well, there are three reasons actually.
Most people start a small business because they don’t consider themselves proficient in certain skill. But is that enough to become an entrepreneur? Do you need something more than just proficiency to succeed? Yes! The first question you should be asking is:
Do I have a passion for this industry?
I want you to take a pen and a paper and write down the answers to each of the following questions.
Below are some questions to help you identify your passions
- How do you currently spend your free time?
- What hobbies do you currently have or had in the past?
- When have you been the most satisfied in your job?
- Would you do that task repeatedly for free?
- What puts a smile on your face?
If you are having difficulty identifying what you consider your passions, try this. Write down every single thing you do throughout the day or week and then rank it on a happiness scale of 1 to 10. One making you the least happy and ten making you the most happy. The ones that rank between 7 to 10 are your passions.
So, I went through these questions and below are the answers I came up with.
- Playing with my kids
- Reading business books and articles
- Using social media
- Creating marketing strategies
- Learning sales ideas
- Creating websites
- Searching for value stocks
- Practicing martial arts
- Watching Netflix
- Writing personal development articles
- Writing business articles
- Listening to business, marketing and investing Podcasts
What am I proficient at?
Take another piece of paper and write down the answers to each of the following questions.
- On what topics can you write more than 100 articles?
- What are three complex problems that you have solved?
- What do people always ask you for help with or take your advice on?
- Would you rate your skill level between 8 and 10 for what you currently do for living?
- What do you do so well that almost no one else can do it as good as you?
Below are my answers:
- Computer networking
- Sales and marketing
- Stock market Investing
- Crafting and executing Social media strategies
- Website Designing
At this point in the exercise, you have two sheets of paper. One with a list of passions and other with a list of proficiency. Now take a third piece of paper and write down any overlapping areas between the two sheets. Once you have the overlapping areas identified, ask yourself the following question for each of the identified areas.
How profitable is this?
- Are there a lot of people who need these services? How do I know this?
- How much would someone pay for this service?
- Are there a lot of other providers in this space?