Go to the Main Business Forum page

A few "why didn't I think of that" stories [Archive] - Page 2 - SOWPub Small Business Forums


View Full Version : A few "why didn't I think of that" stories

Pages : 1 [2]

Dien Rice
December 5, 2006, 06:28 PM
Standing in my local Barnes and Noble last night, picked up the latest People magazine while waiting for my husband to check out. Came across this: "Enterprising moms--and one dad--strike it rich"--several stories in one article about parents who thought up an idea to solved a kid-related problem or need, and it turned into a business:

Hi Cindy,

Thanks for sharing those great stories of entrepreneurs!

"Find a problem and solve it" is one way to get business ideas! In fact, this is the method recommended by Joe Karbo, who wrote the book, "The Lazy Man's Way To Riches".

Of course, the key is that your "solution" shouldn't create bigger problems than it solves! That's one reason why the statement - "Build a better mousetrap and the world will beat a path to your door" - is incomplete...

(Maybe the saying should be - "Build a better mousetrap, which doesn't create any significant new problems in the process, and market it well - and the world will beat a path to your door!")

The current design for the most common type of mousetrap is over 100 years old. Is it true that nobody could "build a better mousetrap" in the last 100 years?

There are "better" mousetraps - those which are more "humane", or those which are better at catching mice. However, these other solutions are generally MUCH more expensive than your standard spring-loaded mousetrap. So while they may solve one "problem" with the existing mousetrap design, they create an even bigger "problem" in the process - by being much more expensive! So that's one thing to keep in mind... Don't create a significant new problem in the process...!

(Some "alternative" mousetraps can be found here... http://www.pestproducts.com/rodent_traps.htm )

There's one other example of this I can think of. I once attended a meeting of an inventors' society. A few people gave presentations. One guy had created a kind of alternative for a "joystick" you could use to play computer games - he was describing and demonstrating it for us. His version was a modified chair... Tilt the chair forward, and you get one effect. Tilt it to the side, and you get another effect. Instead of just moving a joystick, you tilt the whole chair! He said it gave you a much more fun game-playing experience...

Maybe he was right. But think of the logistics. Stores that sell stuff for computer games now just need a little bit of shelf space for each gaming accessory they sell. To sell just a few of his "gaming chairs" - they'd need to devote the whole floor space of the store! So... In the process of making a small "improvement" (in his view) to the gaming experience, he created a huge extra problem for any stores that might want to sell his "gaming chair"! (Plus, I'm sure it would be much, much more expensive than any other gaming accessory too...)

Some important things to think about... :)

Thanks Cindy for sharing those great stories!

Cheers :)


Some recent posts on the forum...

Unusual Business Ideas
Interesting, proven, and unusual business ideas
Entrepreneur-Web Internet Resources
Directory of resources for entrepreneurs
Best of Sowpub
Some of the best posts

This is a SOWPub Archive page