Don’t Forget to Think Inside the Box

November 23rd, 2010 by | Print


I’m sure that you’ve been told numerous times to “think outside the box”. Only the true visionaries think outside the box, right? Or maybe you’re questioning, “We all think inside the box, right?”


We may all exist inside the box, but not everyone thinks about what the box is and how and why it came into being.

Answering these questions is as equally important if not more so than fancying yourself a big thinker for creating a new way to sell soap. You need to think inside the box, understanding how and why it was created before you can have any success in thinking outside of it.

So what is the box and who created it?

The box is built out of a frame of reference and a set of habits by the people who use the box most. People are creatures of habit and they often practice the path of least resistance.

Think about your own scenario. Let’s say you are a solopreneur who started a coaching business. What perception do most people that hire coaches have about coaching and how do they typically go about hiring coaches for their services?

The key is to assess if the box they’ve built is the best box for generating the solutions they seek and need. This requires us to examine the box inside … and then out.

There may not be a better solution to the one that already exists. And to create a different solution solely to give yourself bragging rights for being “unique” doesn’t mean you will be successful. Those who live inside the box (i.e. your prospects and customers) only care about a new box if it solves their problems quicker, easier, more entertainingly, and at less cost.

So to think inside the box first, do your market research and interact with your prospects and customers. If you want to know what they want, why they want it, and where they get it, the best way is to ask them and see if the competition is doing a good job at providing solutions.

You need to understand your market’s perceptions and habits before you try to convince them that they should change them.

If you are having a tough time understanding the “how”, “what” and most importantly “why” your market lives within their box, contact me. I’m here to help.

All the Best,

Doug Dolan
The Solopreneur’s Guide


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