Every young entrepreneur has great ideas. They come all the time. In the shower, on the bus, while pouring milk into your cereal.
When the idea arrives from somewhere in your soul, it is perfect. Your excitement rises as you realize it is exactly what the world needs – what the world has been waiting for.
You start making a business plan. Nothing detailed, just main points. How you will make it, how you will package it, how you will market it, and of course, how much money you will make. As the idea expands and blossoms into a complete business plan you keep asking yourself – why didn’t I think of this before – it’s such a great idea. You picture yourself a few years in the future with your feet resting on an ancient oak desk and a cigar in your mouth – a reporter from Fortune magazine is listening attentively as you tell your success story.
A few days pass and you are still high on the idea. It is all you think about, it keeps getting bigger and better. What started out as a little seed of plan has turned into a fully functional money making machine. Of course, it is still all in your head, but there is nothing going to stop you now.
You are excited enough that one evening you decide to tell your best friend about it. Obviously such great ideas should be kept secret, if somebody else hears about it they might steal it, but this is your best friend. You ask him if he can keep a secret. He says yes.
You barley control yourself. Talking fast and with grand hand gestures you explain every detail to your friend. He listens, nods and sips his tea as you explain how this is going to be bigger than diagonally sliced bread.
You finish your speil, exhale and say, “so…what do you think?”
Your friend looks at his shoes, and then at you, and then shakes his head, “It will never work”.
Like a baseball hitting you in the head, the words make your knees weak. You try to explain again, maybe he missed an important detail. But it is no use, your friend will not change his mind and the damage is done – your great idea bursts.
The next day you laugh at yourself for having such a dumb idea.
Your Great Idea Will Not Work
There is one thing that you can be absolutely certain will happen after you come up with a great idea, actually it is so certain you can call it the golden rule of great ideas.
Golden Rule Of Great Ideas: people will tell you your great idea will not work.
Unfortunately most young entrepreneurs are not aware of this rule. They have a great idea but it lasts only until somebody shakes their head and warns that it will not work. At first the young entrepreneur is surprised by the rejection, but then creates their own reasons why it will not work. Like a freshly planted seed the idea dies before it ever sees the sun.
The golden rule has stillborn untold number of great ideas. Which is a shame because most of the best ideas of the past have come from people who ignored people that said, ‘it will never work’.
Of Course It Will Not Work, It Is Something New
The main characteristic of a great idea is that it is something nobody has thought of before. You discovered a new way to give people what they want. A way that even the people themselves do not know they want.
Before Henry Ford mass produced cars did people want cars?
Henry Ford said, “If I asked my customers what they want, they simply would have said a faster horse”. Henry had a great idea that nobody but him realized. Had he told his best friend about his great idea, the response would most likely be, ‘that will never work.’
It is the nature of a new idea to be seen as a bad idea. People know they want a faster horse, but they know nothing about cars. Car, what is that? That sounds like a bad idea, just make a faster horse.
Don’t Throw Away Your Great Ideas
Of course not all your great ideas are going to work. Some of them are bound to fail.
But the only way to find out whether your great idea will work is to rely on your head and gut. You are a much better judge of your great idea than anybody else is. Try it. Do not quit just because somebody says it will not work. If history’s entrepreneurs listened to their friends we would be riding genetically modified fast horses.
Roman Jelinek had his own business and then he sold it. Now he is hoping to start another successful business. He is putting all his efforts into his website How This Website Makes Money. Read more about Roman here.