How do you come up with a great idea? How you start doesn’t matter as long as you start.
Find something that you and other people can relate to. Make it personal by telling why you care about it. Find something where you can make a difference and create a compelling story that sticks. Amazing things can happen if you have focus and the right drive/motivation to make a change.
Making it real
If you want impact, you need a plan. See your challenge in the three steps: Result/Outcome, Purpose, and MAP
Result/Outcome: what is the envisioned future that you are picturing. After you achieved your impact, how will the world be a better place (what changed)?
Purpose: Talk about the why (again!). If you know why you are doing something and you have a compelling reason, it’s most likely you and everyone else in the team will have an easier time to keep on going and master challenges that will come up on the way. Innovation needs drive and drive comes from emotion.
MAP: You need a Massive Action Plan, something that you can navigate with. You need to know the crucial points you need to reach in order to arrive at your destination. Focus on the five core things that need to fall into place for your impact to materialize.
Make it real by bringing facts. Nothing sucks more than a fluffy idea that has no substance. You need input from people that prove a fact, a pain point, a need. Show, don’t tell. By creating a simulation in whatever way (paper/Styrofoam prototype, mockup, simulation) you give people to dive into your “world” and see the vision with their own eyes. You give them an easy entry point that you can later discuss. It helps you to gain validated insights – learnings.
Innovation doesn’t cost money (in the beginning…). Build something people care about (creating value – Innovation) and create a compelling story (marketing) and people will get passionate about it and help you (with their time and money) to achieve your vision. Think about Bertrand Piccard and Solar Impulse. It was a great innovation with a great story that people loved to invest in.
How not to screw it up?
Most startups and in fact and new business initiative fail (75% of the time) because of 1. building something nobody wants, 2. having a lousy team, 3. lack of focus, and 4. sucking at marketing (telling a great story) and sales (delivering value). So what to do? 1. at all times, keep the user in the center. Think about what would make his life easier. 2. Focus on max 3 pain points. Prioritize what you want to do and only focus on the top 2 priorities. If you get those done, you can still do more. 3. Make sure you have trust in your team. People try new things if they don’t have anything to fear. Your role as a table captain is to make sure that people have the freedom to screw up. Kids constantly fall when they learn how to walk. But they keep getting up until they succeed. That is learning. 4. Include the user early on and develop any solution together with them. Test the market and see if people are ready to put down some money for what you want to do. Be passionate about what you do. Nothing sells more than passion.