Life’s Too Short to be a “Me-Too” Entrepreneur

Innovation is the heartbeat of successful entrepreneurship. A business’s growth potential is determined by the quantum leap in innovation that it represents.

At the top of the value chain are pioneers, who offer value innovations.

Next are migrators – these are businesses with value improvements.

At the bottom of the pile are settlers – businesses that offer ”me-too” products and services.

Veronika Scott: One Stitch at a Time

Building a social performance strategy or starting an impact-focused business is one of the best ways to fill unique needs in the community. Veronika Scott began The Empowerment Plan while a student at The College for Creative Studies in Detroit. She took a class that asked her to create a product that filled a need in her community. Identifying the issue of homelessness, she began spending time at a warming center where the design for the EMPWR coat was conceived.

While conducting her primary market research, Veronika was challenged by an angry homeless woman who asserted that she didn’t need a coat, but a job. This insight shaped the innovative business practices The Empowerment Plan built upon. The non-profit organization hires single parents from local shelters and provides them with training and full-time employment as seamstresses so that they can earn a stable income, find secure housing, and regain their independence.

Questions for Your Business:

  • Define your key customers – who they are, what they do, where they live and operate
  • What unique advantages does your product/service provide that your competitors don’t?
  • Are customers buying your product/service?
  • What challenges does your product/service solve?
  • How motivated are your customers to pay you?
  • Are customers willing to spend the required amount to enable you to build a sustainable business?
  • Does your target market have the potential to grow?
  • Are there other customer segments you can serve with related products/services?