It’s another question I get asked a lot. What’s a good business to start? As if there were good businesses to start. Whoops, I guess people do make lists, experts even, about types of businesses to start. Does anybody ever go back and check on them?

I’ve come up with occasional suggestions on this blog. And I’ve picked up on suggestions by others, including Guy Kawasaki and David Pogue, all of which you can access quickly enough here by clicking on the business ideas or startup ideas categories. Of course, some of those are less than enthusiastic. And please, don’t ask me the difference between the two categories. Nothing significant.

My favorite answer, however, is in this less-than-three-minute video on SBTV, called What Is A Good Business to Start? And in case you can’t view the video, here are some highlights:

  1. Look in the mirror. A good business to start is the one that matches who you are, what you know how to do, what you like to do and the resources you have.
  2. It’s not like there are good businesses or bad business. There are businesses that …
    1. You can do;
    2. You want to do; and
    3. Where somebody wants what you’re selling. Those things come together in what’s the good business for you.

Does the state of the economy matter?

I think that’s a misconception. Occasionally you’ll find business opportunities that arise as a result of events, but usually your business opportunity is so much a function of you and who you are. There again, whether it’s economy related or not, do people want what you have to sell? That’s crucial.

I recommend you click the link and watch the video. While you’re there, SBTV has quite a bit of good video available on many small-business topics. And it’s free on the Web. I’m biased because there are a couple of dozen segments with me in them, but still, I think it’s well done and very useful.

Tim BerryTim Berry

Tim Berry is the founder and chairman of Palo Alto Software and Follow him on Twitter @Timberry.