What attributes would the worst, least desirable businesses have? This way of thinking is surprisingly helpful for figuring out what good businesses should look like.
Here’s what a high risk or bad business might look like (the more of these attributes a business has, the more difficult it will be to succeed):
Very expensive to build the primary product or core service; difficult to find or rare components
Takes a long time to build the product or service before it can address a real customer need and unknown if it will ever fulfill the needs...
Learnings from building a new wholly-owned venture internally within a large organization:
Momentum in the early days is important (not dissimilar to traditional startups), you can build momentum by having a bias for “showing” vs “telling” and doing the “showing” in public
Keep pushing even in the face of resistance, as the leader(s) of a new venture you may have more internal support and leverage than you think
Find and stay tuned in to who your champions and supporters are within the broader organization (watch what they do and how they try to help, not what they say); executive turnover among supporters will be an ongoing challenge...
An attempt to use inversion to explore what you might do to not build wealth over time (in no particular order):
Avoid learning new things or investing in your own education eg assume you understand the world already
Stop experimenting or trying new things
Do not take professional and financial risks, keep doing what feels the most comfortable
Optimize for salary or hourly wages as opposed to an ownership stake and/or equity upside...