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How to Test Your Next Business Idea

Updated: Jun 21, 2022

If you are a fan of Pat Flynn and his blog Smart Passive Income, you will love his new book “Will it Fly”! (check out reviews at and read our list of 60 Small Business Ideas for Anyone Who Wants to Run Their Own Business

The Three Validation Tests

One of the best things Pat’s book offers is the three validation tests that show how an idea fits into your life, your strengths, and the overall goal of your business.

  • The Airport Test

Imagine that it’s five years from now. You’re at the airport and you run into someone you haven’t seen in the past five years. They ask you “How’s life?”

Now imagine you answer “Life is great. It couldn’t be better!” What would be happening, five years from now, to make you say that?

Now ask yourself: is the idea you’re working on right now contributing to that five-years-from-now goal?

  • The History Test

This test makes you analyze three or four of the different jobs you’ve had in the past. You call to mind the position, the environment, the people you worked with, specific memories that are either pleasant or painful.

When you do a review like this, it helps you see what those jobs might have had in common…and why that pattern might be attracting you over and over. Does it point out a skill or a preference that you have? Whether they were good jobs or bad jobs, they have something valuable to tell you about who you are…and that will give you a better understanding of how your idea fits into your skill set.

  • The Shark Bait Test

Imagine you are a contestant on the show Shark Tank, standing in front of the celebrity investors and pitching your idea. Are the sharks ready to invest??

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