September is the start of the school and academic year. As the new January it gives us all a chance to press the restart button and start a fresh. With the longer Autumn nights drawing in learning a new skill, taking up an area of interest or hobby to occupy our time can have beneficial effects in starting up a business, changing careers or obtaining a new job.
As women we find it hard to give ourselves the time and permission to play, explore and learn. However, lockdown gave some of us the opportunity to do just that. In no longer putting off trying something new or rekindling a passion, it generates ideas and days dreams on how we could live our personal and professional life.
However, with so many directions that your career and life could take, how do you know which one to pursue? Which one should be the big idea? For example, say you want to start a side business. You have a couple of ideas and you want to know which one is a good business idea. Well by doubling down on one idea at a time you can apply the 3T’s process:
- Step 1: TAKE one idea that excites and resonates with you. What problem are you trying to solve for your customer? Is your product and/or service a vitamin? - Enhances someone’s life or lifestyle e.g. nutrition, yoga or fashion. Is your product/service a painkiller? Solves a pain point for your customer e.g. saves them time in cooking, decluttering, building a website etc.
- Step 2: TALK to the market you wish to operate in. This stage is about research. Through your personal and professional networks talk to people who have a business in the industry/sector that you want to operate in. Talk to people who could be your potential customers to gauge if they would buy; and what benefits and features they are looking for. You can also survey and poll potential customers using social media, mailchimp, qualtrics or another survey tool.
- Step 3: TEST the market. This stage is about getting proof of concept – will people pay for your product/service. By testing the market, you can get an idea if there is demand for it, what people will pay and whether it is scaleable.
This approach can also be applied to changing careers or finding a new job. However, step 2 will involve talking to recruiters and people who do the job you are interested in. Whilst step 3 would involve getting work experience, applying for jobs and attending interviews to get feedback.
Want to know more?
Looking to generate ideas to change your career or life? Online courses with Udemy or free public lectures by Gresham College is a great and cost-effective way to start. For short or traditional courses, you can search for adult education colleges and universities near you.
Are you a woman in business?
Have a start-up or business advice story to share to ‘inspire and aspire’ our community in the 'new normal?'
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3Cs Digital is a web marketing service dedicated to helping women in business set up and develop their online presence. Through coaching or consultancy services in web design, copywriting and social media marketing 3Cs Digital equips women in business with the digital knowledge and skills to: create and design websites, find their brand voice and curate social media posts to attract their ideal customers to their small business website.