With my work placement coming to an end and my penultimate year of BIS in UCC on the horizon, I feel obliged to write this blog on idea generation mainly because of the final year project. Some ideas seem so simple we wonder why nobody thought of them before. Others are so revolutionary we wonder how anybody could've thought of them at all. Here is a couple of tips for finding inspiration for a good idea and turning it into a success.
Pick something that you have an interest in.
I have heard this advice from numerous sources and I believe the reason for this is that if you have interest in something, you will really put your heart and soul into the project and we all know success is based around hard work. Inspiration can come from all sorts of sources depending on your interests. Maybe some everyday activities such as driving to work. Let’s say for instance you are a devout man united fan, chances are you know of some area that needs improvements or something that doesn’t already exist. This might be a more efficient way of getting match tickets online and no you can’t steal my idea!
Never give up
Sometimes it takes a couple of bad ideas to find the right idea. Many famous entrepreneurs have spent time and money only for an idea to flop but they didn’t give in and kept trying until they became a success and made millions. The secret is to make mistakes early and cheaply.
"Business opportunities are like buses, there's always another one coming." – Richard Branson, founder of Virgin Enterprises.
Attack Practical Problems
Make a note whenever you encounter a service or a customer experience that frustrates you, or wish you had a product that met your needs that you can't find anywhere. Then ask yourself, is this a problem I could solve? And how much time and money would it take to test my idea? This is how Trustev was born. Pat and Chris had fierce problems with fraud in Cubic telecom so Trustev is basically the solution to the problem.
Search for a Better Way
Since we are in the 21st century, many great ideas have already been thought of and developed. But there is one thing to note, most of these solutions are out-dated and usually there is a better way. As one goes about their daily life, routinely ask yourself, "Is there a better way?" You would be surprised at how frequently the answer is, "Yes." Existing products are a good source of inspiration. One should never feel that just because there is a product out there similar to yours that you can't execute it and market it better.
Remember to send me a large cheque if you manage to create the next Facebook or Google.