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3 Things Your Business Idea Must Have To Succeed — as Proven By Famous Harvard Business School Startups There are different ways to come up with business ideas, but the successful ones share these factors.

By Catalina Daniels and James H. Sherman Edited by Frances Dodds

This story appears in the January 2024 issue of Entrepreneur. Subscribe »

Pete Reynolds

Every startup starts with an idea.

But how do many entrepreneurs actually come up with those ideas? The reality may surprise you.

We are angel investors who spent the last couple of years interviewing 18 Harvard Business School alumni on their experiences starting companies, for a book called Smart Startups.

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