The best entrepreneurs and innovators have a deep passion for what they are doing. Whether it's ending world hunger, or enabling faster payments, the individual behind it jumps out of bed each morning eager to get to work.
I continually talk about the importance and power of finding problem fit. Separate from the tech or 'how' a problem is solved, a deep passion for solving a problem enables the founder to explore broader possibilities. What differentiates people is where their passion lies.
Passionate on the solution
Many corporate innovators are passionate about how they solve a problem. This means they focus on an idea they think are the ultimate answer to a problem. This often leads to shiny new toys and promotion lead launches. But sometimes also leads to disappointing market stickiness. Why? Because they get so focused on one solution, they stopped looking at what the market actually needs. In my experience, exploring various approaches to solving the same problem open golden opportunities to disrupt an industry by re-visiting the core problem it addresses.
Founders that focus only on the solution tend to have blinkers on, and only pursue ways to validate that they are right, resulting in a weak market alignment.
Passionate on the problem
On the other hand, entrepreneurs who tend to be passionate about the problem they are solving are independent of 'how' they solve it. This opens their minds to broad ideas, including the input of the market they are trying to service.
Since the market is dynamic, they can keep up with what the market actually wants and needs. They will assess intimately what exactly the problem is, how it is affecting the market, and why these problems exist. They are the ones who know every single detail about the market. Because of this, they will build dozens of alternatives before focusing on a few. I’ve known innovators who deliver products completely manually, just to order to explore the social, emotional and function needs of the user base as they solve the market problem.
While it is indeed very common that many are successful with selling a solution, we should always take those innovators who are passionate about the problems of the market as the role models. They are the ones who would rarely fail.
References: https://www.quora.com/Can-problem- solving-be- a-passion http://siliconprairienews.com/2014/03/anyone-can- turn-a- problem-solving- startup-into- a-passion/ http://googlesciencefair.blogspot.com/2011/04/developing-passion- for-problem- solving.html