Do you have a solution in search of a problem?  You’d be surprised at how often we have businesses espouse some expertise, create a product or service and then look for a market that will  buy it.

And that’s a recipe for disappointment as it’s rarely successful.

Mousetraps are a classic example.  There are literally thousands of patents for mousetraps.  Building another one will not have people beating a path to your door.

So as an organization look at your specific expertise.

  • What problems can you solve for your market?
  • What outcomes do your clients get? Do they value these?
  • And will they pay and how much?

Back in the mid 1980’s I was part of the inaugural NSW Entrepreneur’s Workshop where we found product and took it to market.

We were a bunch of engineers and found an inventor of a crimping device – designed to join sheet metal.  Hardly a mainstream application.

The inventor was adamant this was a great idea – just needed to be marketed.

Let’s just say we had no chance.  This was a solution looking for a market.  There wasn’t one.

The group who won the national awards found a product which had a ready market and by the end of the competition had sold over $50,000 worth.

It was a salutatory lesson which I’ve never forgotten.

So when you’re looking at your expertise, what is the commercial application?  What do your clients get in terms of more time, money, status or happiness?

If you’d like help figuring this out, give me a hoy.

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