As business owners, we are naturally inclined to be creative and constantly thinking about new ideas and ways to improve our businesses.
You could be lying on a beach relaxing or having a massage or just daydreaming to pass the time, and a new idea might come to you.
It could be:
- A new service to add to your business
- A way to tweak your business and make it better
- An idea for a whole new business model
- Or anything else that would modify your business
It often starts as a small seed of a thought at first, which then grows into an actual concept, and before you know it, you’re planning your next business venture.
This might happen to you regularly or it may happen to you once every blue moon, but either way, no doubt you consider modifying your business, creating a new offer or hatching a whole new business idea.
As delightful and time consuming as these thoughts may be, they are usually unsustainable and difficult to differentiate between ideas that could actually go somewhere, and ideas that are just wasting your very valuable time!
Here is a 4 step guide to ensure you take your incredible ideas to reality ASAP.
Step 1: Time Limit
Allow yourself the space and the time to contemplate and explore these ideas. Don’t immediately dismiss them as pointless or futile – it’s important to dream!
However, it’s also very important to keep a track of your time as a business owner and maximise every minute you get.
So if these ideas are maybe a little too exciting and are keeping you up at night or distracting you from your existing business, then set a time limit.
Limit how long you’re allowing yourself to explore these ideas.
If your idea seems like it could be serious or possible, then give yourself the time, say two days, to develop and logistically think about it. Write down your thoughts and plans, explore on paper or digitally what execution of said idea would actually look like.
Often when we get it out of our head, the process of understanding whether or not to pursue it is 10x easier.
Step 2: Make a decision
Ideally, by the end of the two days, you’ll have come to one of three conclusions:
- It’s possible – let’s do it!
- It’s not really going to work.
- It could work, but now isn’t the time.
For any of these conclusions, just remember that business ideas can be resurrected. If now isn’t the time to start developing and taking charge of this idea, then put it on the shelf. Document your thoughts around it and put it away for months or years to come.
Making yourself pick one of the 3 options listed above can really help you be decisive… Yes, there are 10 different options we could list but the 3 above are ones to pick from to reduce decision making time.
If you’re thinking now’s the time to start developing your fabulous idea further, then this next step is the one for you.
Step 3: Logistics
This can be the crucial step to developing your business ideas, you have to consider key questions, such as:
- Does this new business idea or project align with the goals of your current business?
- What do you want this new venture / project to be and why do you want it to be a success?
- What does it mean for you and your personal goals?
- What are you aspiring/aiming towards?
- What is the probability of this actually happening?
- What is the best and worst case scenario?
- What would be the 5 year plan?
- What is the long term potential of this idea?
Once you’ve considered these questions, you can begin to map out your next steps and question if they make sense… Are they logical?
Step 4: How will this affect your current business?
We only have 24 hours in a day, and so if your current business seems to consume all of your time, maybe engaging with your new business idea or project is not wise.
Splitting your time may result in your current business/offers being neglected or falling to the wayside.
This could result in your primary income – your current business – falling or striking in revenue.
Having two businesses (one of which is a start up) usually means that you don’t take home more money, but that you have higher expenses. Therefore being aware of what resources you have available to you is really important.
In addition to this, you must factor in your team members, and how they would react to change. Does this make sense for your team vision and culture? Are you going to get some team members involved? Who?
Finally, consider if you actually want to start a new business venture, or if you have just fallen out of love with your current business and are looking for a new, fresh and intriguing project or service to add. This can be hard to internalise but sometimes when we have the urge to start something new it is an indicator of a problem that we need to solve in our existing businesses / projects.
Although some people do take action when they have a new business idea, it is only a small number of people who do this successfully.
Lots of people throw themselves into projects and new business ventures only to find through lack of resources that it isn’t sustainable to what they are trying to build.
This isn’t a DON’T use your amazing business ideas, it’s more a piece to save you tons of time and remind you of what it actually takes to add more to your already busy schedule!
Below is a handy table for you to review:
|Those who succeed:||Those who fail:|
|– Are the minority |
– Are highly driven, highly motivated, highly focused
– Take time to plan and use time effectively
– Engage with a business coach to ensure maximum success in a narrow time frame
– Generate revenue from both businesses and end up in a better place than when they started
– Understand what the goal is before diving into execution.
|– Do it for a dopamine hit |
– Put lots of effort in, but receive little progress in return
– Burn out fast from spreading themselves too thin
– Become exhausted and fed up with current business and the new venture
– End up in a worse place than when they started with a damaged ego and little self confidence
If you have read through this blog post and are serious about making the big decision to follow through with your new business idea, you know it is something that you are committing to doing…
Consider consulting May’s services to help you structure effectively to not only generate revenue for the business, but to make money for you to take home! Planning with this is a must, your time is precious, make sure you have a proven plan to work from.
If you want to hear May speak more on this topic, listen to Episode 40 of the Honest Business Podcast:
‘How To Know Which Business Ideas To Execute’