What should I do if I have only an idea?

So you have decided to run a startup. And now you have only an idea. Is it good or bad? Let’s say it this way – many people don’t have even an idea when they start a company, but they still succeed.

The reason for that is that 99% of startup ideas do not work for the first time. Everybody thinks of Steve Jobs like he always knew what we wanted. While in reality he was an excellent executor of his experiments, and he learned from his experiments a lot.

Yes, Steve Jobs still had an original idea, that a phone should have a screen that can be controlled with fingers. What would happen if it didn’t work? He would come up with some other idea, that’s all! And iterate on that if it works.

What to do with an idea?

First, you should filter your idea. 

1. Is the problem that you solve, intense? Do people struggle and want to pay for the solution? Like, transportation is an intense problem – people have to move from point A to point B, and if the distance is more than 2 miles, covering this distance on foot daily is considered in modern society extraordinary.

2. Is the problem that you solve, frequent? If the problem has high intensity, like transportation, but happens once a year, people don’t buy a car, they usually prefer buses, taxis, etc.

3. Can people reach you for your solution? For example, people in Sahara dying of thirst have a pretty intense problem, but will they be able to approach your water, metaphorically speaking? If not, try to think of something else.

4. Does the solution have an adequate business plan? For example, with uberization, many people think that they can uberize everything. But for example, that is not the deal with nannies. Children wouldn’t want to sit with a new nanny each day, and nannies earn enough to respect themselves and not to switch a family every day.

So, your idea went through all the filters and you are pretty sure that the problem that you solve

You should do only one thing with an idea – find real users for your solution to the problem. implement it as soon as possible and iterate. The best if you can implement your first MVP within 2-3 weeks and go on further from that point. 

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