I was watching this clip on TED by Malcolm Gladwell about how Howard Moskowitz a food scientist discovered 1/3 of americans liked extra chunky spaghetti sauce. To cut a great story short Howard tested lots of different types of Spaghetti sauce and after testing every conceiveable type of sauce discovered that 1/3 of people liked chunky speghetti sauce and no one was servicing that need, by tapping into this gap in the market prego the brand he was working with made 600 million $s
What stuck out for me was that spaghetti sauce companies always researched their product by asking people what kind of sauce they like and no one ever said they liked extra chunky sauce, even though it turned out a 3rd of people actually did.
Which I think proves what Michael says about most people not really knowing what they want, and just ordering off the menu for what they think they can have. Howard Moskowitz says "The mind knows not what the tongue wants" but you could also say "The mind knows not what the person wants?"
It also struck me that in order to find out what kind of spaghetti sauce 1/3 people liked they had to create it because it previously didn't exist at least not on supermarket shelves. So like Michael says rather than ordering off the menu of what makes you happy, ask yourself what would you love to create?http://www.ted.com/talks/malcolm_gladwell_on_spaghetti_sauce.html