Do Problem Validation First, Successful Business Later

Problem Validation

In the process of startup building, you need to do problem validation. Problem validation is one of the ways that #GenerasiPenemu can do to validate the business idea. Compare to Business Validation or Product Validation that focuses on what business model is used and what product is produced, Problem Validation focuses on what problem you want to solve.

No matter how good is your product, or how good is your business model, if the problem you want to solve is not a problem that needs a solution, then your business idea and product will end up in vain. Furthermore, you still do not have any evidence to prove that your idea or product is a great idea or product. Therefore, problem validation is needed.

The first step to do problem validation is to find out which problem you want to solve is really the right problem that needs solution. How to know which problem is the right problem to solve?

Characteristics of the right problem

To ensure that the problem is the right problem is to know the characteristics. Then, the characteristics of the right problem is that problem needs to be experienced by lots of people, that problem irritate people, that problem is valuable and could earn money if it is solved, and lastly that problem has not been solved by others.

How to problem validation

After you know the characteristics of the right problem, then this is the right time to start validating the problem. How to validate if that is the right problem, is by doing interviews with people directly related to that problem, in any industry that you want to know.

If your startup is running in the education industry, then you can find some teachers or students to interview them, or if your startup is running in the F&B industry, then you can find some restaurant owners or regular customers of F&B stores to interview them. You can ask what they had experienced, and how the problem disturb them.

By directly entering the industry and asking people in there that are directly related to the problem that you are trying to solve, you can validate the problem more effectively and efficiently, so you can focus on what you can do to ease their problem. Steps to validate the problem are below:

Step one – You or your team need to make an interview script about the problem you want to validate.

Step two – Do a mock interview between you and your friend, or with your team member.

Step three – After the trial interview, start to revise the script if needed.

Step four – Interview at least five to ten people. Ask your friend to help you do the interview together, one to interview people, and the other to take notes about the interview.

Step five – Discuss the result with your team and update your business idea based on the interview result.

Some tips to do problem validation is to ask for facts, not opinions. Questions with question words such as when, where, why, is better than questions with “would you want to…” or “do you think…” to ask facts. You also can not focus on the solution you want, because it will bias the interview result with what you think is important, not with what your customers think is important.

So, #GenerasiPenemu, that is all about Problem Validation, from the definition, function, to how to validate the problem. Understanding and doing problem validation is a very important step, before doing other steps in the Lean Startup method, such as Market Validation, Product Validation, and Business Validation, or before building any dream startup to make #IdeDariKamu become come true.

You can also learn about startup building and win the chance to get billion rupiahs of funds for your startup by joining Ideanation Annual Competition. To be even more enthusiastic, you can also watch the journey of the #GenerasiPenemu friends of the 2021 Ideanation Annual Competition on Instagram @in.ideanation or on the Ideanation website at

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