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Business Ideas

Sift Through Your Business Ideas for a Winner With These 3 Steps

Sift Through Your Business Ideas for a Winner With These 3 Steps
Image credit: Shutterstock
VIP Contributor
Serial entrepreneur, mentor, advisor and co-founder of
3 min read
Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

Great ideas are an important part of the creative process that is required for success as an entrepreneur. The more ideas you have, the better you’ll be at thinking on the fly, coming up with a great product, improving your product offering and problem solving throughout your life.

Related: Do You Need a Great New Idea? Stand On the Shoulders of Giants. 

However, when you’re just getting started, too many ideas can sometimes feel like a bad thing. A flood of ideas can make you wonder which ones you should pursue and which ones your should leave on the sketchpad for later exploration. If you’ve got a list of some pretty good ideas, but you’re feeling immobilized about which ones to move forward with, check out these three steps to pick a winning idea.

1. Gut-check

The first step is to start to sift through the ideas you actually feel passionate about. If you can’t see yourself staying excited about an idea now, don’t pursue it. No matter how much you’re in love with any particular idea, there will be challenges.

When you identify an idea that you really love, you’ll have that extra bit of passion needed to bring that idea through the hard times and into fruition. Check your gut and go for the idea that you love!

Related: Is Your Startup Idea a Killer, or Should It Be Killed?

2. Explainable

The next step is to try to explain the idea as a business model to someone. Do they get it? You don’t have to work out all the details but just vocalizing and hashing through explaining your idea to someone, preferably to someone with experience related to the idea’s market, will help you to see if it can move out of the idea stage and into a planning stage.

An idea you can’t explain is one that you are more likely to face issues with. If you can’t get anyone to understand the idea then how will you get clients to understand it and want to purchase it? You should take the time to fully explore if it’s explainable and understandable.

3. Executable

The final step if your idea makes it past the explainable phase is to see if there are aspects of the idea as a business that you could actually execute on to make it profitable. An idea that can’t be executed on isn’t an idea worth taking any further.

If the idea is so far beyond your skills or understanding that you don’t know what to even do to get started, it might be time to consider an idea that’s more in your grasp. Ask yourself what next steps could you take to start making this idea an executable business plan. If you can’t think of any next steps, scrap it and start over at step one.

Related: Why Your Business Idea Should Sell Itself

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