How to find a great business idea

Ok, I have this chat box on my website that allows visitors to make enquiries. Do you know what the top 1 question is? What good business idea can I start with little capital? The first time I received this question I actually thought it was a joke. Why would you ask a total stranger to give you an idea to start your business? After I got the second, third, dozens and more of such enquiries,  I woke up to the fact that this is for real.

People find it challenging to come up with business ideas for themselves. Of course. When I look at the day to day struggles many people have to put up with just to make ends meet, it is definitely very difficult to find the headspace to come up with innovative business ideas. That is why, I have dedicated a series of podcast episodes on how to find the right business idea for you. Let’s dive in after this short break!

The most successful approach to find great business ideas for yourself.

My goal in the first episode on business idea series, is to show you the most successful approach to find great business ideas for yourself. But before, let me clear that notion of trying to get a business idea from external sources. If you want to start a business and you want to be successful on a long term, then what I am about to say now, is key, the idea for your business should come from within you. Not a suggestion from someone else. Not replicating a business idea you have seen that works for someone else. When I say from within, we are now talking about things like your passion, your interest, your skill set, your purpose.

Do you get what I mean? Look, I am a big fan of building a sustainable business that will flourish for decades to come. A business that would stand multiple challenges and you will come out even stronger and more profitable. A business idea that would be your daily motivation to do the work. So I am not talking about quick quick money or ideas for lazy people. If that is what you are looking for. Don’t join my lab, please, I beg you! Otherwise, you will get disappointed.

Know what you are passionate about.

If you are passionate about your business idea, you will be ready to do what it takes to make it become successful. So the first approach to finding a great business idea for yourself is to know what you are passionate about. So wake up . wake up. I have met too many enthusiastic people that do not really know what they are passionate about. They know they want to be rich. Yes, they want to earn money. And of course they know they want to be successful. But successful in what, as what? They tell themselves that one day I will make it. Make what.  Many even possess the stamina to do the work but they are not really clear about what they are passionate about.

If you want to find a great business idea that will work for you, you must love the idea. Like you love it so much that it motivates and inspires you everyday. If you do something that you are passionate about, I promise you, you will wake up almost every day filled with motivation to get to work. And it is only with high internal motivation and passion to perform, can you build your business idea successfully. Then when you have built it, someone will see you and they think they too can start the same idea. Sorry, if they do not have the motivation and endurance that you had, due to the passion for the idea that you have, they will not go very far.

It is time to tap into your own mind.

Dig deep and recall those activities that make you feel like you are on top of the world. Those activities that when you start it, time stops. Everybody is born with an innovative mind. But not everybody has been feeding their innovative mind with empowering content. For some it’s been social media glamorous postings or comedy videos. Great, I know, we all need to laugh, sometimes pose and probably be a little vain from time to time. But how much empowering content have you been exposing your mind to in the last 3 days? If you have not, then how do you want to be innovative? How do you want to be exposed to find that that creates a sparkle in your brain, and whala, you have an idea, a great business idea.

See a problem, think solution.

Some people have groomed their minds to become so passive that great business ideas are right in front of them or deep in their passion, that they fail to even realise it. So it is difficult to craft out a business idea from that kind of mindset. Now, your first practice is to begin to tap into your mind. Begin to groom your innovative mind into a mature mind that can see a problem and think solution.

See a problem, think solution. This is actually part of my number 2 approach to finding a great business idea for yourself. If you are not ready to tap into your own innovative mind, then go and get a job. Abeg! And nope, do not tell me you do not have an innovative mind. Everyone is created with the ability to think innovatively. Groom your mind. How? We will explore after this short break!

African entrepreneurs, you are unbeatable!

Look, African entrepreneurs, your creativity is unbeatable. Have you not seen how some boutique owners will buy a second hand cloth and wash it, put a new tag and label and sell it as a new piece of fashion? Yes o. Our people are drop dead innovative. Key here is to build that hidden innovative thinking and creativity to become a valuable asset, beyond any limitations you might have set for yourself.

Think bigger yes but also think better. So instead of washing, ironing and tagging second hand clothes that was made somewhere in China,  enriching the chineese population, why not begin to think of owning your own boutique retail chain with clothes made in your community?

Ah, you will say, second hand clothes are well sewn, cheaper and stylish compared to made in Africa. Ah, it is people like you in China that invested energy, time and innovative thinking into developing a textile landscape that now serves billions of people around the world. They do not have two heads o. And sorry, I would not buy the excuse of no financial capital o, infrastructure is bad and so on.

Think big. Be ready to learn. Find a mentor. Get a couch and begin to build your legacy. Well I coach more on how to start with the resources available to you in my entrepreneurs lab. And our goal is to make you globally competitive. I actually teach about problem and solution in some tutorials, about developing a problem statement, I listed some examples of problems that can lead to business idea and even how to filter using my SWOT analysis in my program. You can click the links to read more.

Now my number 2 approach to find great business ideas for yourself is to change your perspective.

The way you see things around you and the perception you create about what you see, affects your ability to imagine what is possible.  If you see a problem and all you see is a problem, then it will be impossible to discover a solution. So when you are scouting and asking google for great business ideas, because by the way, that’s also one of the top 10 questions nigerians ask google, great business ideas, so when asking google this question, also try to pay attention to simple little problems happening around you. Because a great business idea starts by trying to solve a problem.

Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg said “When I started Facebook, I wasn’t trying to build a global company. I realized you could find almost anything on the internet—music, books, information—except the thing that matters most: people. So I built a service people could use to connect and learn about each other”.

So you see, he found a simple problem and nailed it with his solution. A problem must not be catastrophic. It could be simply finding ways to make people’s lives easier. Or is it the solution global fashion retail chains are providing? They realized that customers would find it easier to walk into the store and get something that fits, instead of spending time sourcing fabric looking for the right tailor and so on.

That said, I love my asoebi and my local tailors sha. Thank God for that. Otherwise, we would just be groomed robots who do not have a choice of individuality anymore in fashion. But the underlying message here is to find a problem to solve around you. Within the process of trying to carve out a solution for that problem, a great business idea or ideas will pop up.

Another example from teh digital world.

Look at paystack for example, they realised that as the Nigerian economy begins to develop and digital shopping grows, companies will need efficient payment solutions. So they created one and it just makes life easier for companies. They did not pay me for this advert. I just love their customer service. Customer service. Oh, a series of podcast and blog will come on that later. Meanwhile people have asked me how to join the Joadre lab. Simply get a full membership to get access to everything and new content by Joadre. Ok after this break, I round up by talking a bit more about the problem as the driver for a great business idea.

Do you see opportunities within a problem? If you feel that there is no opportunity around you, your ability to find one will decline to zero. Wake up with a mindset that there are opportunities out there for you and today you will find one. Don’t see only problems, see solutions. See problems, think solution. Find a problem to solve, you are giving them added value and they will be happy to pay you money for your services or product. When you find a problem or discomfort to solve and it in line with what you are passionate about, become even more passionate about developing a solution. This is where the business ideas will come from.

Now, lets extract the key takeaways  from this blog and I will live you with a quick to do! If you are looking for a great business idea and you want it to be successful on a long term, then let the idea for your business come from within you. The first approach to finding a great business idea for yourself is to know what you are passionate about. It is time to tap into your own mind, to dig deep and recall those activities that make you feel like you are on top of the world. Those activities that when you start it, time stops. Everyone is created with the ability to think innovatively. So use it. Groom your mind. Change your perspective.

Now, your To do.

Identify 3 things you are passionate about and one problem you can see now that you feel any of your passion can solve. You can DM me or post them as comments beneath this podcast episode page. I will read every single one and I will select one person to get a free 4 weeks participation in my lab.  Thank you so much for listening till the end. Follow me on instagram and facebook not to miss out on my daily post and updates.  Thank you so much for staying till the end. Love love you. Remember you possess the ability to transform your ideas into action, into wealth. It is all about how you set your priorities. Look forward to sharing some more tips and wisdom from my entrepreneurs lab with you next week.



I am Joana, a Nigerian-born Austrian-based entrepreneur and activist. Founded Joadre in 2012 and continue to develop content to engage and empower African SMEs.

The Joadre Analysis & Industry Journal

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