Entrepreneurial Discovery 2.01 B
Characteristics that Help Entrepreneurs Find Opportunities • Commitment and determination. • Leadership • Opportunity obsession • Tolerance of risk, ambiguity and uncertainty • Creativity, self-reliance and ability to adapt • Motivation to excel • Social Nature (hiring, organizing, and inspiring others)
An entrepreneur also capitalizes on: • Life experiences • Person’s position in a social network • Nature of the search process a person uses • Ability to focus on opportunities • Intelligence • Alert – always looking for new opportunities
Scientific Vs. CircumstantialDiscovery • Scientific Discovery: Occurs when a physical or technological observation is made. Example: Wright Brothers inventing the plane. • Circumstantial Discovery: Occurs when an observation is made based on specific knowledge of time, place, or circumstance. Example: Armed Forces using planes for battle. Commercial aircrafts for travel.
Areas of Entrepreneurial Discovery • The introduction of a new good or a new quality of a good. Example: MP3 and upgrades • The introduction of a new method of production. Example: Henry Ford’s invention of the assembly line. • The opening of a new market. Example: McDonald’s moving into China for the first time. • The conquest of a new source of supply of raw materials or components. Example: Moving a shoe manufacturer from the U.S. to Mexico to access cheaper labor. • The reorganization of any industry. Example: Reorganization of telephone company. Bell, seen as a monopoly, restructuring allowed for new, smaller companies.
Recognizing Opportunity through Analogies • Analogy – comparing an unfamiliar abstract idea with an already known mental image. The two things are similar in some way. • Example: You are as annoying as nails on a chalkboard. I’m going to be toast when I get home. There are plenty of fish in the sea. I love you more than a bee loves honey. • Inventive Examples: 1. Alexander Graham Bell created the telephone and used the analogy of nature and how modeled it after the human ear. 2. George deMestral realized burrs were getting stuck in his dogs fur so invented velcro to be similar and hold material together. 3. First typewriters modeled after piano keyboard. • Read: http://www.ideaconnection.com/right-brain-workouts/00243-making-the-most-of-analogies.html
Recognize Opportunity through Pattern Recognition • Many problems can be diagnosed and remedied in a pattern-recognition mode. Like a doctor looking to diagnose an ailment, look for patterns occurring. For Example, if you’re always thirsty, you urinate frequently, you’re losing weight, and your eyesight is blurry, you have diabetes. • Example: Look to other businesses, mentors, your past to recognize the problem. A similar situation can probably be found and very beneficial advise on how to solve the problem.
Recognize Opportunity through Prototype • Prototype – a 3-dimensional version of your vision. • Why a prototype is helpful to discovery: • It enables you to test and refine the functionality of your design. Sure, your idea works perfectly in theory. It’s not until you start physically creating it that you’ll encounter flaws in your thinking. That’s why another great reason to develop a prototype is to test the functionality of your idea. You’ll never know the design issues and challenges until you begin actually taking your idea from theory to reality.
Recognize Opportunity through Prototype 2. It makes it possible to test the performance of various materials. For example, your heart may be set on using metal ~ until you test it and realize that, say, plastic performs better at a lower cost for your particular application. The prototype stage will help you determine the best materials. 3. It’ll help you describe your product more effectively with your team, including your attorney, packaging or marketing expert, engineers and potential business partners. 4. It will encourage others to take you more seriously.
Recognizing Opportunity through Reverse Engineering • Reverse Engineering – examining a completed product with the intent of understanding the technology and process used in its design, manufacture, or operation. • Why use Reverse Engineering? Saves spending time and money by utilizing solutions that have already been evaluated. An effective way to learn how to build a technology or make improvements to it. • Example: Taking something apart to see how it works.
Stand Out in the Crowd! • Ways entrepreneurs can Distinguish themselves from their Competitors • Determine your product or ideas major selling advantage asking: ~ What will make a customer buy from you and not a competitor? ~ What makes your product different from the competition? This may be a product feature or the type of service you provide.
Stages of Entrepreneurial Process • Discovery – Being alert to opportunities. Alertness leads individuals to make discoveries that are valuable in the satisfaction of human wants. The role of entrepreneurs lies in their alertness to act on unnoticed opportunities. • Evaluation – Research to determine how, by whom and with what the opportunities can be used to create new goods and services. Ask the following questions: • What need, want, problem, or challenge does your opportunity address? • Is this opportunity reflective of a "niche," or relatively small, market or of a large market? • Where is your market located? • Who is your competition? • What price will the market bear? • What conditions exist that allow this opportunity to exist? • Does this opportunity hold great interest for you? • Have you conducted a full-scale search of the Internet, libraries, and other related sources of information to find out everything you can about this potential opportunity? • Are there any legal ramifications related to this opportunity?
Stages of Entrepreneurial Discovery • Exploitation – turn the discovery into a new product or service. Things to consider during exploitation: • Be quick, so you are the first to introduce the idea but also make sure you are protected from imitators. • Knowledge of customer demand is important. • Capability of management team. • Stakeholder support • Access to technologies needed.