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Tell me, is it a good (enough) idea?

Updated: Aug 23, 2021

Summary: in this point, we introduce multipoint inspection test to see if an idea is good. We also discuss why it is important to focus.

  • Choose carefully, choose once.

  • Good choice comes from experience, which comes from bad choice..

  • Experience and failure is the real valuable knowledge. Learn deep, not broad.

  • Startup is the business of dreaming, not the dreaming of business.

If you are an idea man, you owe yourself experience, market knowledge,and a failure, which is the path to real knowledge and real success.


When you have an idea, go through a multipoint inspection:

  1. Is this idea original? has it been done?

  2. Can it be a business? you make a business out of this?

  3. Can you start that business?

  4. If this is established, can you stop competitors?

  5. Does it have to do with you? if you have no background and skills then forget about it, or acquire the skill.

  6. Would this idea be welcomed by everyone? not just "beneficial in general"

  7. Does this idea has big impact to a lot of people? who is the buyer?

  8. Would the beneficiary pay? don't just say "sure". You need to test it in real market with real product or at least an MVP.


Most people have ideas all the time. Ideas about problems to solve, ideas about gadgets and functions, ideas about business offerings. How do you deal with them?

step 1: evaluate the idea;

step 2: upgrade the idea to business concept or drop it;

step 3: act.


So many ideas, and yet only one life. Why focus?

  1. Every little detail on earth has a universe in it. You design a chop stick with a diameter of 2.01 to 1.99 mm. There are one trillion numbers between this window, such as 2.005654343455424mm. Focus, and you find the meaning of your life in a grain of sand. Trust me it is there.

  2. Focus on even the smallest idea and business is a life time of work. Your reward is relation and sense that you are needed. Someone pay you for helping them - how wonderful!! visualize that.

  3. Realizing any idea takes tremendous technical work and even more marketing work. Focus, the road will open. Don't weight the pros and cons.

  4. The first time you act, you are bound to fail. Failure is mandatory, not elective by smart clever thinking. In real world, "success" is knowing all ways that can fail. So go ahead and stop playing chess in your own head. Fail and experience, throw the book away.

  5. If you like learning, there is much long road ahead for learning. After you start a business, there is more things to learn. So stop thinking. Commit to higher learning, which is doing. Hurry, go ahead and fail, go ahead and do.

  6. Real valuable knowledge is the kind no one wants to teach you (too valuable). So experience and explore. Go way way beyond the books and your living room.

Things you throw away is still yours. Only things you throw away is yours. Whatever you throw away is yours.

For someone who has many ideas and can not commit, here are some facts you should consider. Maybe you don't agree with all of them, but that is OK. If you can agree with one, then I have convinced you that you should focus.

  • Never worry about if the idea is good. It is. You need to find "Good to whom". Go find the people the idea is good for and deliver the news. No one will help you.

  • Never worry if the idea is brand new. A new idea may be new only to you. A new idea that does not exist may not be able to exist. So bring new is not a merit of an idea.

  • Your mission is not to think, but to realize that idea. Thinking is the first meter of the marathon.

  • Your goal should be to be the world's number one in one thing. Pick that thing. Train. Be the number one.

  • No one can be star in two sports (not even Jordan and Tiger Woods). No one can maintain two social network persona at the same time and make the accounts grow.

  • Every idea is a grain of sand, but it also contains another universe. There are infinite number of numbers contained between 1.99 and 2.01.

  • Keep all ideas, you are forever a hobbyist. Evaluate, design, throw away and do, fail, jump in the details, and you are a professional enterprise builder.


First, there are tools to evaluate if an idea misses any elements. Use the interactive free idea evaluator to decide if an idea is good, or tough to implement.


To analyze an idea, follow this sequence.

  1. Check if this idea is original. Sometimes, new is only because you do not know something already exist. So check. Just type a question into Google.

  2. You will find, maybe you don't have any thing, or you have many search results. If there is nothing, then it means you are unique and/or early. You need to educate people about it. Or maybe it is a bad business idea. Maybe it is a tough poor business that no one wants to do it. If there are many players, you need to figure out how to differentiate. You can not be like others. They are already here, and they are not dumb.

  3. Check industry and market inside information. If you don't have funds, just do google search thoroughly. Check if you could take shares from incumbents, or deter copy cats who play dirty.

  4. Check your target audience, how you access them, and what value do you provide to them to the point they might consider paying you.

  5. Estimate the daily balance sheet AFTER the business is in place.

  6. Estimate the cost of starting the business.

More details can be found in another related blog.


Second, realize that there are many many ideas on earth. You don't need to treasure an idea so much - it is afterall not really yours until you DO it. Ideas don't matter, it is the execution that matters.

Third, you need to focus, no matter how imaginative, creative and hard working you are. An idea must be a business concept ... if you can not feed the organization that works on your dream, then your dream won't fly. It takes money to feed the do-good army. So you must focus on getting money. To get money, you must provide value - and value is something you need your full time, your entire life to fulfill.

An idea always has to be a secret until you make it happen.

The following are two videos discusses why one should focus.

An idea can be a gazillion different things.

  1. it can be an object or novelty (e.g., a coffee shop with pet store)

  2. it can be attribute of an object (e.g., a PURPLE shirt)

  3. it can be a business concept (e.g., a social networking cat hair saloon)

  4. it can be a problem (e.g., some people might want a bike tire that never flattens).

So naturally, there are gazillion different ideas. If you have a lot of ideas and wants to write them down, you can have a collection cabinet for random rocks on a beach.

Sometimes an idea is NEW to you only because you do not know something already exist and was not selling well. Some problems do not have "silver bullet" solutions - even the people you think will benefit will not like it or buy it.

Remember, the world is full. Business is full. If it looks like a vacuum, it is only a desert.
Ideas are a dime a dozen, even this great one of yours.
It is only after they start that people found their idea has been implemented years ago by others.

How to turn an idea into a better business concept?

Look at the idea hospital to see how to fix an idea.

Why it is crucial to focus on ONE. (Link)

How to design an idea from scratch that suits you? (Link)

Why you are your biggest enemy when it comes to focusing?

You don't need to use your own idea. There are too many ideas. Never keep your idea "secret", it just makes it worse. An idea is truly yours only after you act on it. startup school website.

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