Need an Idea for a Business to Start?

Businesses I'd consider starting.

Posted Feb 23, 2017

Pixabay, CC0 Public Domain
Source: Pixabay, CC0 Public Domain

I'm fortunate to have a successful career coaching practice. But if I needed to start a business, here are some I'd consider that might appeal to Psychology Today readers. Perhaps one might interest you or trigger an idea of your own.

MentorMatch. Many people wish they had a mentor. Others wish they could mentor someone. Enter MentorMatch, an online service like match.com that pairs  mentors with protégés. It would include a one-minute video of each person. Mentors and protégés should have to complete a brief online course on how to be a good mentor and a good protégé.

MentorMatch could be established as a nonprofit or a for-profit in which mentor and/or protégé pay a fee. Advertising could add evenue.

Although many kids and teens would benefit from a mentor, liability issues might require the service to be limited to adults.

A variation on the theme: ShrinkMatch in which prospective patients are matched with psychotherapists and counselors.

A chain of flower carts near busy train and bus stations. I like cart businesses because start-up costs are minimal. For example, with diligence, you can get a great location while paying little or no rent. 

I particularly like the flower cart business because there’s no trend risk of flowers going out of style. Also, you needn’t carry large amounts of inventory—just the day’s worth. You avoid the often massive regulations associated with the most common type of cart: a food cart. Plus, flowers are a happy product.

It's unlikely that a single cart will yield sufficient income, so I'd make my goal to have a few but no so many that I lose quality control.

To avoid theft in this heavily cash business, after running the first cart myself to learn the business, I’d hire trusted friends and relatives to run carts and pay and treat them well to avoid theft and simply to be a mensch.

ProcrastNoMore: an app for procrastinators. ProcrastNoMore would, of course, contain timed reminders and a way to use your social media connections to make you accountable. ProcrastNoMore would also contain a ProcrastoLog option. Every 15 minutes a chime would ring and the user would give him or herself a letter grade for the previous 15 minutes. For grades less than a B, s/he'd be asked which of the top  causes of procrastination were operative and if s/he marked one, would be given a few text and/or audio solutions.

In addition to selling ProcrastNoMore on iTunes and the GoogleStore, I’d sell bulk licenses to large employers: private-sector, non-profit, and government.

LTR Bootcamp.  Many people would like a long-term relationship but end up kissing lots of frogs and nary a prince or princess. Or perhaps the problem is that s/he is a frog. The LTR Bootcamp weekend would be highlighted by video-recorded mock mini dates, on which each person would get and give feedback. Of course, the bootcamp’s leaders would also provide feedback. Video is core to most instruction from golf to job interviewing, why not dating?

The takeaway

Do any of these ideas pique your interest? Might a variation be more appealing? Or does one of these ideas trigger a different idea you want to explore?

Marty Nemko is a career and personal coach. You can reach him at mnemko@comcast.net.