By Adrian Swinscoe

To grow your business you need to be focused on solving existing problems and finding better solutions to newly discovered problems.

Are you over-solving your customers’ existing problems?

When done well and sustainably, a good business should find and serve its customers well by solving their problems and in doing so deliver healthy growth and plentiful profits for the owners.

However, many businesses lose clients and waste resources because they get carried away with their view of the problem or what they think the problem is rather than what their customer’s view of the problem is. There is a danger that by adding stuff or developing packages or new products/services/versions that it is confusing your customer, possibly driving them away and giving them stuff that they just don’t need.

Does that sound familiar?

Therefore, from time to time, a useful question to ask when working with your clients is:

Are we solving the problem the way that the customer sees it or the way that we see it?

Asking yourself this question from time to time will help you get to know your different types of customers, their (changing) needs and what you need to do to solve their problems and not over-solve them.

Perhaps, less could be more.

Looking for new problems to solve?

New business growth will be fueled by your ability to identify new problems to solve. Opportunity is everywhere if you just look for it. But the trick is that in order to solve a problem you don’t need to come up something completely new, you just need to look for problems or frustrations that people have. Remember, the rise of the budget airlines like EasyJet , like Ryanair , borrowed its business model from United States carrier Southwest Airlines and they all built their businesses on the back of frustrations that passengers had with expensive air travel.

So, when you spot a problem or a frustration that your customers or potential customers have, ask yourself: Is this problem currently being solved? In the best way possible for everyone? Can you find a group of people that are not being served? Can you do it better than it is already being done — cheaper, faster, better?

Have you seen a problem or frustration that is waiting for a better solution?