Hi Ian, thanks for sharing!

Personally I don't think anybody should go looking for a problem, it should be something that unearths itself organically through life experiences. What you can be though is more aware in your day to day activities, be that at work or at home.

Think about inputting hundreds of things into an excel sheet. Something that could be better solved using some type of automation software. Generally people will move through their day without being affected by these minor or even major irritations. It's really important to be purposefully aware, combined with an entrepreneurial mindset, to pick up on these nuances and think "Hey, this is a real problem that could be solved in a better way. I wonder if anybody else is already solving this πŸ€”".

So to answer your question (and in my opinion):

1. Discover a problem through lived experiences

2. Is anybody already solving this problem? If yes, can I do it 10x better?

3. Figure out the size of the market for this problem

4. Start talking to some potential customers to validate the problem πŸ˜„

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Apr 27, 2022Β·edited May 6, 2022Author

Thanks for the detailed response Scott.

Although I agree that sourcing problems organically is an excellent approach, I don’t believe it is the only one.

I think what you have outlined is solid advice and something I had followed myself in the first projects I started working on; however, an alternative approach that I think is just as valid is a market or inflection point first approach.

The counter to only working on organic problems is that you are missing massive opportunities in new growing markets. Problem founder fit should definitely still be a factor i.e. why are you positioned to solve it better than anyone else. But, to summarise I would say an equally valid approach IMO would be;

1. Identify a broad rapidly growing market e.g. Ecommerce, Creator Economy, Web3

2. Map inflection points that would allow you to create a 10x solutions.

3. Map your skillsets against market and inflection points

4. Narrow down a vertical in that market

5. Talk to potential customers in the space to validate their biggest problems

Love to hear if you have any thoughts on this?

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