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Economic Development is . . . (increasing the flow) of capital through the community and reducing its leakage.


I have to get something off my chest. I must confess one of my flaws (yes plural) is that I am not a very tolerant person. People can really get under my skin and annoy me; here are some examples: The driver who won’t turn right on red. The engineer that developed the sugar cone that drips out of the bottom. The jerk who takes up two parking spaces. The designer who created skinny jeans for men. The idiot who reads the paper while driving. The movie executives that keep making totally unnecessary movie sequels.

But nothing annoys me more than the WANTREPRENEUR! Definition of “Wantrepreneur” – Someone who “is gonna” start a business. -Someone who “will find the right idea some day!” -Someone who wants to “act” like an entrepreneur. -Someone who “thinks about starting a business” all the time -yet doesn’t do anything.

Sorry, did I just describe YOU? If you’re a “wantrepreneur”, at least admit it. As the quote says: “The truth will set you free, but first it will make you MAD!”

The good news is Tama County Economic Development is here to turn you from Wantrepreneur into Entrepreneur. So how are we going to do this? Let me explain. Wantrepreneurs tend to hope & pray that their precious little “business ideas” will take off. They jealously guard their ideas hoping no one will steal them. But what’s more sad, is when I see someone come up with some “TOTALLY GREAT IDEA!!” Then they spend the next few months or years working on this un-proven business idea.

“But Heath, how will I know if my idea will work, unless I build the whole business??” It’s easy, you make an incredibly stripped down, SIMPLE semi-working version of your business idea. If it takes you more than an hour, you’re doing it wrong. It’s called a “Validation Test” and it’s an extremely important part of knowing if a business will work.

This is where most ”wantrepreneurs” would start creating business logos, business cards, filing for LLC corporation status, writing business plans, and all sorts of fake “business” junk that does NOTHING AT ALL. If you first TEST THE WATERS of a business before jumping in, you can save a lot of time and money building a business no one cares about. If no one buys your idea in the test, simply shake it off and step it up and move on to testing the next business idea (eventually something will stick).

Almost every business idea you have can usually be validated with $0.00 and a few minutes of time and that’s EXACTLY what my office will show you how to do. When I’ve explained this method to people, often the reaction is (with a dropped jaw) “I just never even THOUGHT about doing it like that!” I LOVE that reaction because it means a HUGE light-bulb and brain-shift just happened inside that person’s head!

The bottom line is this is the cheapest time in our nation’s history to be an entrepreneur, so go into your garage and start prototyping. Then slay that inner “wantrepreneur” of yours by calling our office 641-484-3108 and get an appointment to start validating your business ideas immediately.  If your idea passes validation then enter our Tama County PITCH & BUILD business plan competition. Written applications are due Tuesday, August 14 at 5:00 p.m.

Thanks for letting me get that off my chest. Now let’s go build something.



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One Comment on “Validation”

  1. rob July 9, 2012 at 3:56 pm #

    really that easy?

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