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Be the Brains of the Operation

Get your mind in gear, and start brainstorming with tips and tricks from an idea expert.

This story appears in the June 2005 issue of Entrepreneur. Subscribe »

You know you want to start a business, but you're not sure what kind. You're looking for inspiration, but you don't know how to get started. Luckily, we went to brainstorming expert Ron Blum to help you set the stage for your dazzling business idea.

Ideas can come from anywhere at any time, says Blum, founder of The Egg Factory LLC, an innovation company in Roanoke, Virginia, that comes up with ideas and inventions that are then sold and licensed to other companies. Still, there are a few ways to improve your ability to conjure up brilliant concepts of your very own. "Come up with transformational innovation--taking processes from one industry to solve problems in another industry," says Blum. For instance, he cites a case where the same technology NASA employs for sticky-type floor mats used before entering clean rooms was modified and applied to the household market as space-age welcome mats that would keep your house cleaner.

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