A few random thoughts I've gathered over the years
  1. Listen to needs in your sphere of influence
  2. Check in with existing customers - they often have amazing ideas and needs
  3. Scour the market to locate likely alternatives,competitors, understand how they are similar different - how they monetize.
  4. Enlist co-founders that share enthusiasm and values to solve the problem at hand
  5. Having a little cash on hand and access to lines of credit can be super helpful
  6. Pitch the idea to 100 potential clients before investing more than you are personally willing to write off
  7. Be willing to scrap the initial idea - keep a business mindset
  8. Start building a team of advisors immediately - SCORE.org can help you find local mentors
  9. Consider all routes to startup funding and understand the pros and cons of each
  10. Make sure you love the work, the people, the risk. It might be a long ride.