Market research sources and links

When you starting a new business you need to find your customer and solve his pain and you need also to invest your time in research to see if your business fits into the market.

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(source: fastf.com)

Priority tasks before starting your business

  1. Identify your customer
  2. Identify market segment / niches
  3. Take a look and research macroeconomic changes, demographic changes, psychographic changes, technical changes, societal changes, political changes and governament/regulatory chanegs

Useful links that can help you in your research

Want to discuss about your idea?

Contact me freely regarding this topic (or if you have some other question) and I will be glad to give you my opinion (my discretion is 100% guaranteed).

About making strategic entrepreneurial decisions

As an entrepreneur you need to make a lot of strategic decisions and they all share these characteristics:

  1. They need to be decided in a limited amount of time (means fast) and very often under a stress
  2. You don’t know for sure what will be the final outcome as an impact of your strategic decision
  3. These are high-stake and high-risk decisions
  4. These decisions cause a significant allocation of resources (time, money, people, knowledge, …)
  5. You have a lot of different paths to choose but you need to choose the right one (with a limited amount of information)
  6. This is often uncharted territory where you can not use your own experience or knowledge (because it is in unknown domain)
  7. You usually prefer status quo terrain where you feel save rather then uncharted territory
  8. Impact of these decisions will have high impact on your company (your company can flourish or be terminated)

As an entrepreneurship you need to feel making strategic decisions is your home territory. And, yes, you will make mistakes, but this is good, because you will learn along this way.

I am a big fan of Maurits Cornelis Escher illustrations and I choose one that perfectly illustrates the strategic decisions. You can read more about this artist here.

So the question is:

Where this man is headed to?

M. C. Escher

M. C. Escher

Yes, he is going up, but from the different point of view he can go also down (if you look the whole picture bellow). The fact is that when looking only this part of the picture you have limited information and you make the decision like you do. Obvious information can also deceive us to see the broader picture.

M. C. Escher

M. C. Escher

Do not let others to ruin your dreams

I talked with my friend and he told me that he is desperate because he feels that he can achieve much more but in organization where he is working all his nice idea are rejected. So, there are two options: to let it go and continue living like that in this organization or to change something. The main problem is that he really believes that from his ideas organization can benefit but nearest co-workers are telling him that this will be hard to achieve, and that they don’t see any real benefit. If you are not stubborn enough or not self confident enough it won’t be hard for other people to silent your inner voices. Everybody has some passion and inner happiness and when you are in that mood the ideas are flowing and everything seems possible.

The problem occurs when you present these ideas to your family members, relatives, friends and because you respect these people much you can quickly abandon your super idea if they tell you that this is “nothing special” or even “really stupid”. If you are not self confident you will abandon these ideas and vision, that made you happy, and you will feel really empty and somehow depressed.

This is wrong because you must not allow opinion of other people to ruin your dreams and passion because this is you and you need to listen your inner voice. Look at the small child – he/she is completely happy and thinks that he can do everything. During the time, through socialization other children, teachers, people told him that something he thinks is possible is really impossible or not worth even trying and all this happened because they are projecting their constraints and limitations from their childhood and parents.

If you really believe in something you need to go for it. It is really hard but you need to be stubborn when it comes to this.

Don’t let anyone to ruin your dreams. If you have a dream, you must protect it.

Relocating (changing the country) and finding your dream job

I got inspired to write this post because my good friend is thinking to leave the country and town in which he was born and where he lived decent amount of time.

He didn’t contacted me directly but our mutual friend asked me for the advice to help him with information, experience so he can do this without much stress. I was in similar situation about 10 years ago when I left the Novi Sad (Serbia).

Your will is crucial

The most important thing is your decision and your will and that you made this as final decision. After this is clear you are now in the “operating mode” and you are doing steps to achieve the goal that you set. So, you first need to decide where you would like to live and what is important for you in the life. Personally, I like variety (to have good geographical position and to have access to the sea and mountains within 1 hour of driving), and if possible that is close enough to my home-town so I can visit my parents with a car. I didn’t thought much about the money, to choose the country by the average salary but I believed that I will find my way (first working for someone and then to go to my own).

If you are a technical person it is really easy because you have all infrastructure that you need to start and don’t need any investment, only your free time. My friend is system administrator with long experience. So,  the first step is to choose the country and city by personal preferences (what is important for you in the life). This list can help you to make the decision if you are uncertain (look under Monocle’s Most Livable Cities Index).

decision-where-to-go

Choosing the perfect location

After choosing the city, where you will live, you need to find a company where you will work. In which branch would you like to work? Is it banking, insurance, young startup, big corporation, automotive industry, some high-tech company, education/university, public service, transportation, heavy industry, pharmacy, medicine, sport… This is very important because you should choose to work in industry that share your values and where you feel comfortable and where you would like to achieve something more.

Choosing the company

So, now you know in which city and in which branch you will search for companies that you will contact. Using Google you quickly come to these companies and then using LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, Slideshare and other resources you quickly come to the key people in these companies so you don’t need to write to some general info@company.com e-mail but you can use this guerilla technique. Try to find HRM (human resources manager) contact, not CEO. If you can not find it at least write to some recruitment e-mail like jobs@company.com

All you need is the patience and persistence when contact them. And don’t be said if they don’t answer.

Prepare your CV that you will send as attachment, update your LinkedIn profile. You can try to contact first only one to three companies that you like the most and try to expose what you would like to do, your passions and how you can help them (attach the CV and link to LinkedIn profile). Before contacting them, try to get more information about them (find their presentations on Slideshare for example and see the problems they are talking and they are facing and think if you can solve these problems with your expertise).

How to begin?

Because, my friend is system administrator it is perfect because he usually has a lot of remote work and it is perfect for start because he can start working for them from his home-town first and after two months all will be clear. He definitely need to tell them at the beginning that he wants to relocate to their headquarters after the trial period is over.

When trial period is over it is all easier if you and company suits each other. Company will do its work to prepare all papers needed for working and living permission, help finding suitable apartment and organize some language course. You will move, maybe a little bit scared of this big change, but because of your strong will from the beginning you will be really happy that you manage to achieve your first goal.

Living in the new environment

After you relocate all is easier. You will need 6 months for acclimatization to non-stress environment because the definition of stress for average man/woman in the country you have entered is far bellow then your own level of stress trigger. I am  still amazed about some things that cause enormous amount of stress among people here. This is the good part of Serbia, you are completely free of stress when you relocate to new environment and “stressful moments there” can not touch you 🙂 You will be happy, more productive and you will start thinking about a lot of new opportunities. When you leave once the zone of simple surviving (and maybe pessimistic environment) you will be amazed.

Why is so hard to start the new thing from beginning?

I have decided that I will start writing my personal blog and it is a hard task to begin.

  • What to do first?
  • What I will write about?
  • How I will organize it?
  • How often I will write?
  • Will someone read this or give me some useful feedback?
  • A lot of other strange questions that stops you to take the instant action.

Solution is easy.

Stop asking yourself.

Do something.

Even if it is not perfect you will improve yourself during the time.

And this is how my first post came out.

I bought a domain first so lets go back to the questions:

  • What domain name should I use?
  • How to find a proper domain name for my personal blog?
  • How to search through all domain extensions?
  • Etc… etc…

Use Google as always for every research, don’t brake your head solving the solved problems or reinventing the wheel (or hot water).

So I chose http://www.solution.to for personal blog because what I like the most and where I think I am the most enthusiastic is when solving various  IT and TECH problems. BTW, I always liked Tonga, heard about beautiful experience from my friend about his Summer vacation there and I said to myself that I should visit this island once. Right now, this is the closest I got to Tonga.

Hey! It wasn’t so hard to write first blog post. I now need to fill all other blank sections, to write something about me, who I am, what I am standing for, and to expose a little bit more, but maybe I can go with this anonymous low profile and wait for the first feedback.
Feel free to give me any feedback or ask me if you need helm in solving some IT or TECH problems – I am working as CTO and as Solution Architect.

So summarize: JUST DO IT! (don’t ask too many questions – any coincidence with Nike slogan is pure coincidence)

It is now time to pack things and to pick up my son from the kindergarten.

Trip to the Silicon Valley and San Francisco

Together with partner we visited Silicon Valley and San Francisco in Autumn 2011. We attended some great events in almost a month, have few pitches and enjoyed Summer like Californian weather in late October…

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San Francisco, Palo Alto, California
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