Business is all about selling to consumers what they want and need, in the form of a bundle of products, services, and inevitable experiences, that is a Solution, for more than it costs to produce that Solution. If you can’t do that, then either you haven’t got a business, or you won’t have one for long.

Starting A Business – The Basics

Before you get carried away by your ‘obviously brilliant’ idea/invention and start spending lots of time and money trying to make it a reality, remove your rose-tinted glasses and read and take seriously the following:

  1. In the beginning, there has to exist a Job To Be Done (problem to be solved), AND
  2. You need to develop a complete Solution for that Job To Be Done, AND
  3. Prospective Customers recognising that they have a Job To Be Done and agree that your Solution is the best alternative (doing nothing is an alternative) must exist in sufficient numbers, AND
  4. Prospective Customers are prepared to pay the price that you need to both ensure your business’s success and to achieve your goals, AND
  5. Customers are so pleased with your Solution, that they are prepared to advocate on your behalf, to in effect, sell your Solution for you – satisfied customers are not loyal or sufficient, you need advocates.


  • Point (1) is critical, as “[b]uild it and they will buy is not a strategy, it is a prayer,” “you cannot create a market or customer demand where there isn’t customer interest.” Steve Blank, The Four Steps to the Epiphany.
  • Customers buy value (via Solutions) from people they trust, not products and services as such.
  • It is Customers who decide what is valuable (to them), not you.
  • You need to sell your solutions for more than it costs to produce them.
  • You need to have an accurate understanding of what all your costs are.
  • Prospective or repeat Customers willing to pay the price you need must exist in sufficient numbers to achieve at a minimum consistent sales volume and make consistent profit.
  • Customer Experience – Customers will inevitably have experiences at each stage (touchpoint) during the awareness, evaluation, purchase, use, and disposal Solution lifecycle. You don’t necessarily need to develop a Disney Land Experience, but you would do well to design every Customer touchpoint so that at least you don’t frustrate and antagonise them.