Everybody has ideas. And many people have good or even great ideas.
But the difference is action and implementation.
The people who simply dream ideas but don’t implement them will get left in the dust and eternally wonder, “What could have been if …”
I’ve had many ideas myself … most of them fill steno notebooks laying around the house, collecting dust, that my wife can’t stand.
I love to dream. I love to dream about ideas, and specifically for business ventures.
In high school, I had a great idea for making some money and owning my own business … it was washing windows of businesses.
The idea was brilliant. I could go into every business and clean their windows.
So I rushed out and bought all the supplies I thought I’d need.
… and they just sat in the bag I bought them in for months, years, forever.
My little window washing business idea never got off the ground.
Because implementing my “great” idea meant I had to go into every business and sell my services. And I’ve never enjoyed face-to-face selling. I loathed it.
(By the way, that’s what drove me to the web, and allowed me to get around this weakness — now it’s just a matter of building websites, launching awesome products, getting traffic and clicks and sales.)
Anyway, ideas are great … but ideas that you can implement today are the best and most worthy of consideration and attention.
In my business endeavors, I don’t lead our team to think or focus on anything that we can’t reasonably implement in a short time frame. I weigh the costs to produce or launch an idea. I think about our in-house talent and what we’re capable of. I weigh the phase our business is in, financially and in the marketplace. I put myself in the shoes of our customers and wonder if they’ll buy it.
I hate ideas that could take months to produce … because I want to launch ideas (or rather, products) quickly, see what our customers say (let them vote with their dollar), and refine, improve and innovate better products along the way, building on the things we’ve done so far.
I tell our team over and over that we should focus FIRST on the low-hanging fruit that will make the biggest difference to our bottomline by giving our customers what they need.
Our team doesn’t like it when I push them to launch a produce (theme) fast. But I don’t like great products sitting on the shelves, or languishing on our desktops halfway done. I want great, finished products out in the marketplace for people to talk about, think about, click on, and give us feedback.
A launched product is much better than a never-to-be launched product. (Fight me on this one, I dare you!)
We’re a small business in a struggling economy. We don’t have money piled up ready to burn on ideas without merit.
We can’t afford to buy all the supplies and let them sit in the bag we bought them in.