So you have an idea for a startup. Now what?


Even if we say that the team and implementation matters more than the business idea itself, we still can’t ignore the importance of working for something that actually makes sense, besides being a passion for founders.

Creativity is all good, but in business there are some ways to check if your idea really leads to a potential business that is worth years of your life.

So when you have an idea for a startup, next step is to test the idea – before you actually act on it!

I had a very interesting discussion with Christoph Raetke from Berlin Startup Academy on this topic last week (mind the interesting background from Odonien in Cologne, the venue of Pirate Summit)

Christoph presents himself as the person who “discourages people from having bad ideas” and runs a program for entrepreneurs in idea/concept stage to help them find or shape the idea worth working for. The program will start in late October and is composed of weekly sessions in Berlin, uniting participants with mentors and big companies.

There are some questions entrepreneurs should answer honestly before taking the leap:

  • Is there something that really needs changing? That really means something to the world out there? Working on a product that nobody wants or can use doesn’t make much sense.
  • How much money you can potentially make? And yes, there are ways to calculate and not only go by gut feeling.
  • What is the competitive landscape? It is very rare to not have competitors, and if they really don’t exist there should be a good reason (most probably not that you are the only one in the world who saw the opportunity).
  • Is it scalable? The guy running the corner shop has a business, makes money, but that is so not scalable. Define how much you want and can grow, as well as what it takes.

Be honest about evaluating what you are doing and if necessary focus on another idea that is more worth.

But in the end, keep in mind: It is not good to work on an idea that is not worth it, but an idea alone is not worth much. Share your idea as as much as you can, without fear. People should know what you are all about, some will offer help or they will get involved.

Below you to watch the video interview for more details:

Check my upcoming book for more in-depth and practical advice and lessons on how to test your product and business idea before you actually develop it.