So, you’ve been thinking and working on an idea – something that might bring some extra income. That would make life easier. And, you never know, might mean you could give up the day job and gain autonomy and control over your working life.
However, leaving the day job is a big step. It could be very risky especially if you have responsibilities and dependants.
A step too far?
So, what to do?
The good news is there’s a process that you can go through to gain insights into how feasible the dream really is – and reduce the risk. Let’s look at five steps you can take:
- Users: Speak to people whose problem you are looking to solve. But don’t give away the solution. The key is to ask the right questions and explore the world of the person with the problem. Find out how they know they have the problem and what they have done to solve it so far. What language do they use to talk about it? Perhaps it is still unsolved. That’s a good sign.
- Problem: Assimilate all the information from the users you spoke to, identify who will be the first potential customers and what they need. Look at competing products or services. Why are they deficient in the eyes of your customers? Understand the problem in-depth.
- Solution: Remember how you started with an idea – the solution? Now it’s time to see if it would work for most people you’ve spoken to. Usually, this is where tweaks are made to the original design and you can start writing a product brief. The product brief is a short document that describes three people’s lives before your solution, during and after they have your solution. How did they find out about you? What impact did it make? Will they tell other people?
- Finance: Depending on your idea, you may need to take the product or service brief to someone who can create your solution. Also, find out the production cost. Check how to protect your idea – perhaps with a patent. Look at pricing strategy. Do a thumbnail finance plan. How much are you short? What funding options are available to you? Is a mix of personal money, government grants, and a crowdfunding campaign the way to go?
- Launch: It’s decision time. Up until now, you’ve spent very little money. Perhaps got some business cards printed. After launch, it’s a big time but now you know where the money is coming from and your first customers. Perhaps start with their money to launch your side hustle.
And all this can take just three months depending on your other commitments. It’s all about talking to people in the right way and creating a plan to solve their problems. Once you have, you’ve now created something of value that people are willing to pay for.
And when you’re confident about the income levels, then it’s time to swap one day job for another. Your own company!
Look out for the webinar on this subject coming in early 2019.