Challenge: Exercising my Strategy Muscle

Inspired by blogger (and, full disclosure, my best friend/boyfriend) Peter Koehler, I have decided to exercise my strategy muscle. He challenged his readers to quickly list 10 business ideas (good or bad) that you come up with on the spot.

This was a fun activity – I encourage you all to try it! I was surprised with some of my ideas (and actually really like a few). Cool to see where your brain takes you when faced with an unusual task.

10 BUSINESS IDEAS (Brainstormed from 10am – 10:15am):

– Personal finance website catered specifically to women in early 20’s. Extremely personalized and simple, growing with them throughout their lifespan and doing unexpected things (like personalized customer service reps joining in on client phone calls to banks, etc, and teaching good financial question-asking by demonstrating).

– Streamilined and robust platform for food/beverage distributers and their vendors to organize Purchase Orders, schedule Pick-Ups, track out-of-stock items, communicate with eachother, etc. Clean/easy to use. (Currently this is sorely lacking in the food business!)

– Book printing company that receives children’s artwork in the mail from parents and turns it into a beautiful children’s book with a narrated story (OR child’s original story turned into book with blank pages so children can do illustrations in the book to match)

– Trademark search website that is clean/easy to use (also app for phone) and explains implications of trademark law in different industries. Connects clients with lawyers who are experts in the field as needed.

– Company that makes re-usable race-bib chips (those who race often can buy once and use for every race by keying in their code, races can provide discounts to those who already own these, helps avoid packet pick-up hassle/expense)

– Design company specializing completely in “re-designs” — company name-changes, logo changes, packaging revamps, etc. Seeing this as a speciality gives companies confidence in the middle of what can be a stressful transition.

– “Luxuries” monthly box: You select how much per month you are willing to spend and your luxury categories of choice (anything from new athletic socks to expensive candles to fancy salt) and you receive a box each month with a surprise luxury

– Penpal Pledge — You receive pre-stamped, pre-addressed notecards in the mail each month to write to friends (you can sign up for 1-5 friends and key in their addresses ahead of time). You receive a 50% discount on the cost if you postmark ALL of these notecards within a pre-set time period (a motivation to actually write your friends like you pledged to!) You can choose a package to do on your own, or give as a gift to your friend so you write eachother).

– Minimalism challenge: A daily email for 30 days with challenges (get rid of 5 items of clothing and donate to Goodwill, unsubscribe to your junk mail, etc) so by end of the month your life is more streamlined

– Art printing platform that allows young age 18-and-younger artists to upload high-res images of their art — so anyone can log-on and purchase beautiful prints (from family members to community coffee shops to people who just want to buy great artwork from young people). Young artists get high percentage of the profits (they are given a suggested price to cover costs but can price higher if they’d like).

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