What business should you start? This is one of the most common and important questions you could ask. It’s a very personal question so there’s no easy answer. The simple answer – it depends.
To help you find the answer to this question some guidelines can be helpful. The following guideline applies not only to what business you should start, but also to careers in general. Success and happiness with your work involves figuring out three things:
1) What do you do well? Come up with a list of what you do well. This list can include any hobbies and interests besides strictly professional skills. For example, a short list might include:
- Graphic design
- Spreadsheet work
2) What do you enjoy doing? Out of all of the things you do well, which are the ones you enjoy the most. Let’s say your favorite activities are graphic design, basket-weaving and teaching.
3) What is currently in demand in the marketplace? Let’s say, (hypothetically of course) you determine that there are way too many graphic designers out there at the moment and very little demand for that skill. Well, you can take graphic design off your list. This leaves basket-weaving and teaching. Let’s say you determine that there is demand for these skills.
Of course you could get a job in an organization as a teacher or a basket-weaver but we’re talking about starting a business, so we can focus on what business prospects might be possible for these skills.
Maybe you start a basket-weaving company and sell your baskets in retail channels and/or on the Internet.
You could start a business teaching others how to basket-weave. Why not create instructional basket-weaving videos and start off by selling them online? There are many possibilities.
If you’re looking for markets that are growing, businesses that cater to the needs of the aging baby boomer population is a great place to start. There are plenty of boomer related business opportunities including providing travel packages, financial planning services and assistive technologies. Another growth market is for green technologies. Businesses are increasingly hopping on the “green” bandwagon. The market for green technologies and services are likely to grow for some time to come.
Float your ideas by family and friends that you trust. It’s always good to get other opinions and possibly ideas. Remember, there will always be folks that don’t like your ideas but that doesn’t necessarily mean that they aren’t good ones!