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Scanning Business Opportunities in Nigeria

Scanning business opportunities deal with the careful identification and examination of every aspect of factors of business opportunity – both with positive effects and negative effects. Essentially, it addresses the extent of business opportunities available that need to be satisfied by an entrepreneur in order to enable him to stay competitive and achieve his goal. It involves identifying potential new products or services that require satisfaction and there is potential and promising market for such products or services. The essence of scanning business opportunities is to create awareness and enabling environment for an entrepreneur or organization to be ready to act on the existing but unnoticed business opportunities.

According to Longenecker, Moor et al (2008), business opportunities are like air – they are always around, even though you may not see it or realize it. What sets entrepreneurs apart from everyone else is their ability to see the potential businesses that others overlook or may not even see and then take the bold steps necessary to get them running.
How do they do it?
These entrepreneurs have uncommon observational skills and the motivation to act on what they see in some cases. the identification of new business opportunity may be the result of an active search for possibilities or insight derived from personal experience or work background. In other cases, the search for opportunities may be a less deliberate and more automatic process. However, Israel Kirzner (1973), a well known economist posits that entrepreneurs possess a unique capability which he called entrepreneurial alertness. This means the ability and readiness to act on existing, but unnoticed business opportunities. It is important to understand that thinking about the world around you and being aware of conditions that might lead to new business opportunities can really payoft.

Scanning business opportunities is all about close examination of existing new business opportunities in form of products or services, their trends, changes and situations. A typical example of how to identify sources of business opportunities involves moving around your residence to find out whether there is any local eatery joint, where people can relax after a hard day’s work and get assorted drinks, palm wine, beer, soft drink etc. A place where delicious foods and delicacies are well prepared with local ingredients unlike the usual fast foods scattered all over the place that lack Nigerian local contents, native touch and taste. If there is none yet, then there is unsatisfied need and as a good entrepreneur you have to move in and satisfy this need in your environment and in near future you may be smiling to the bank.

Another possible way of identifying and scanning sources of business opportunities is to find out, for instance if there is any company that does house to house delivery of gas or sells different types of delicious bread direct to residents in your locality. If there is none, then there is need for you as an entrepreneur to move in and satisfy the need and make your cool money.

The focus is the ability and foresight to identify any need in an environment that people may be willing to pay for if that need is provided. The Master Dangote is quoted by Anosike (2011) as saying: “That human needs are insatiable is an eternal truth. As long as there is life, there will always be needs. Man will never be satisfied. Satisfy this need, he will focus on another or another need(s) will surely emerge and that may even seem to be more compelling than the former. And the fact is, once you are able to and satisfy a need in the society, you have made it. But for you to be able to do this, you have to be a student of the society. You should always be studying the society to know what people are thinking, doing and where they want to go, which is the trends of events. You should also have it at the back of your mind that man, like every other animal, seeks pleasure and shuns pain. He is attracted to pleasure the way metals are attracted to magnets. Therefore, if you are looking out for the needs to satisfy, your thought energy should be concentrated on scanning those things that provide pleasure, those needs that would make life easier than what it is at present.” Dangote (2011).