Opportunity is a chance for progress or advancement for any entrepreneurial venture. It cannot be judged by its size, it can either be big or small, can bring huge profits to the business or just a minor cost saving, it can be a grand innovation or just a slight quality improvement. Opportunity can lead to a greater chance of success and a better position. There is a famous saying that“opportunity comes once in a life time”,so any business should grab it before it goes. Sometimes, businesses identify opportunities by chance as innovations happen by accident, as a result of observing the effect of something that happens unexpectedly. However, the chances of success are manifold if the businesses take the control of the process of opportunity generation. There are certain steps through which a business can even generate opportunities proactively rather than waiting for them passively.
All products and services have an inherent tendency to be obsolete. Continuous opportunity generation helps in survival and longevity of any business. Opportunities can be generated by ‘spotting’ (recognising the commercial viability), ‘seeking’ (gathering data and information to extract from it) or ‘creating’ (Need to look for situations, where some ingredient is missing). The information which can be transformed into opportunities may stem from external (outside the business) or internal (inside the business) sources. The external and internal sources can be divided into three sub-categories:
Outside-observation-led or Self-observation opportunities
Existing and potential entrepreneurial ventures can benefit immensely by understanding external and internal sources of opportunity spotting and idea generation. In addition to identify observation, problem and solution led opportunities for entrepreneurial success, there’s a need for companies to explore ‘psychological strategies’, which are less dependent on internal and external sources and are either based on ideas, word association, or role play. The psychological strategies for opportunity generation are not dependent on detailed information and can be used by anyone irrespective of their involvement in the technical design and development of a business. However, if one is able to combine these strategies with the power contained in commercial information, the chances of the effect become manifold. Similarly, combining psychological strategies with internal or external strategies produce some seriously powerful results as well.
The ideas being generated by psychological, internal and external sources strategies are rough or incomplete in the beginning; they become an opportunity only if they are processed and value is added. Developing a commercial idea based on the opportunity is impossible without appreciating the importance of social, cultural, economic, political, and technological environment. ‘Enhancing opportunities’ – the process of enhancing ideas moves them away from the abstract and conceptual towards the more functional and practical end of the creative spectrum. One should not forget that generating and enhancing opportunities should be separated from the evaluation or judging process, which will be the topic of the second webinar to be held in May, as a part of the series – “The power of Ideas”.