The most successful products that come to market are those that solve real-life problems of consumers. Take the standing desk, for example. Although standing desks have been around for hundreds of years, modern statistics show that the average worker sits at a desk for 5 hours and 41 minutes each workday. So much sitting can cause a range of health problems, so go-getting entrepreneurs looked to solve the problem by creating innovative standing desk designs for the modern worker. Joel Heath of Fluidstance believes he's found one.
One Problem Solved – Another Problem Created
While standing desks do solve the problem of sitting too much, their recent popularity has brought on a wave of new complaints. More specifically, some started to point out the cons of standing desks, including joint problems, sore feet, lower back issues, and increased risk for cardiovascular problems. What is a forward-thinking, ambitious entrepreneur to do? Why, create a secondary solution to solve these problems, of course!
And that is exactly what Joel Heath of Fluidstance has done. From his experience in corporate America, he recognized that standing desks could get him out of the seat and onto his feet, but it wasn’t the perfect solution. In addition to the potential health concerns listed above, people who use standing desks tend to ‘stand heavy’ and lock their knees into place. To solve this, Joel wanted to create a product that would increase movement for standing desk users. In a recent interview at SXSW 2016, I caught up with Joe, who told me more about the product.
The Level by Fluidstance
The product is called Level by Fluidstance. It looks like a skateboard without wheels and is designed as a balance board. A person stands on the Level while at their standing desk and balances himself or herself while working. This subtle motion adds value to your standing desk. More specifically, it’s fun; it feels better, and people who use it stand on average one hour longer using the Level.
Balancing on the Level while performing computer work at your standing desk sounds like it may be a challenge, but Joel says the company went through 27 different prototypes before creating the final version. As they discovered, there was a very fine line between too much movement (which would distract and impair your ability to work) and too little movement (which wouldn’t give you the benefits). The final version of the Level was created to mimic what you feel in your lower legs while walking without lowering your productivity.
Joel Heath’s Advice for Other Small Business Owners
In my interview with Joel, he not only tells us about the Level and demonstrates how it works, but he also shares his advice for other small business owners and entrepreneurs who are just getting started. You’ll have to watch the video to get all of his information, but one of his most impactful statements was, “Jump and build your wings on the way down.”
Many small business owners and would-be entrepreneurs hold themselves back from great ideas, but you can only find success if you reach for success. Develop your product or service to be a solution to a real-life consumer problem, then jump in to make your dream a reality.