How to choose the right opportunity
A framework for evaluating what problems are worth solving
Following up from my previous article, today I’m going to share my four-part framework for selecting the right problems to solve, or “how to choose the right opportunity.” It’s the first time I’ve tried to explain it in words, so bear with me if this essay is kind of long-winded and full of rambling.
To illustrate the core principles, I will use real world examples from my experience. That’s why they’ll mostly revolve around selling legal tech, finding career opportunities, or observations about the legal industry. Make no mistake though—my framework consists of principles, not specific tactics—so they hopefully apply to your situation which likely has nothing to do with legal startups, social media marketing, or finding a sales job.
The principles are based on the following four questions:
Is there budget dedicated to solving the problem?
Can decision makers move quickly?
Is what you’re offering aligned with everyone’s incentives?
Is the timing right?
Obviously it would be best if you can answer “yes” for all four questions for the opportunity you’re evaluating. But even if you can’t, that’s ok. Because sometimes, the answer to one (or more) of these questions will be “maybe” or “it depends.” Below, I’ll try to articulate the thinking behind each of these questions, which you can hopefully use to evaluate your particular situation.
Ok, with all those qualifiers out of the way, let’s get into it.