How many times have you heard the popular advice to “follow your passion” if you want to build a successful business?
And how realistic do you think that advice is?
If you’re one of the many people who’s already trying to make it work, and things aren’t going as fast or as easily as you feel they should in your business, then by now you’ve probably found a few of the holes in that follow-your-passion idea.
Don’t get me wrong – passion *is* important in business, for at least two very good reasons:
- If you’re passionate about something, that’s a pretty good indicator that you probably have quite a bit of specific knowledge of that topic or issue, which you’ll definitely need if you intend to turn it into a business.
- Passion is motivating. If you didn’t feel passionate about what your business does, you wouldn’t put in as much effort and commitment. Without that passion, you’d let a handful of setbacks put you off, and you’d never stick with your business idea long enough to make it a reality.
But passion isn’t the key ingredient. Just because you’re passionate, that doesn’t automatically mean you or your business will be successful. So passion isn’t the only thing you need to focus on.
Business. Your business model and strategy, to be precise.
For a start, what will your business actually do for its customers? What big problem will it solve for them, or what great delight will it give them? Without answering that question, your business has nothing to offer.
The next thing to ask yourself is, how many people need this problem solved? Or, how many people want this delight? If the answer is “not many” then you don’t have a viable market opportunity, no matter how passionate you personally feel about it. (And if the answer is “I don’t know,” you’ll need to do some research before you can move forward.)
The third question is, how will you reach out to those people and offer them your help to solve that problem or create that delight? Because if you don’t know how to make that offer to the right people in the right way, it’ll be hard to generate any revenue!
Once you’re able to give accurate, realistic answers to all three of those questions, you can combine your passion with your validated business idea – and *that’s* when you’ll start to see far greater success.