Scott’s Thoughts: Good Ideas Made Great

Many lightbulbs.Once and a while, a good idea comes along. You’re sitting in traffic, shaving, staring out the window in a coffee shop, and BAM! an idea strikes you. It might be for your marketing plan, your book club, or a brand new business… suddenly it appears, shining in your mind.

Sometimes you think your idea is so ground breaking that your instinct is to keep it to yourself. “This could change my business, my life, the world!”

And it could. Provided you share it with others.

There’s a funny trend in revolutionary ideas: They generally don’t become revolutionary until other people have improved them. Your good idea is probably one half or one third of a great idea. In order to reach its full potential, it must cross-pollinate with others.

Great business minds often say that their most successful businesses aren’t the ones they set out to create. What happens? A good business idea gets into the market and the forces there challenge it, change it. Partners, clients, friends, family… they all contribute and inspire changes which take the idea to the next level.

Steven Johnson, author of the book Where Good Ideas Come From, gave a great TED talk on this topic, and his findings show that innovation originates when our “hunches” mature and encounter other “hunches” over time. You can watch an animated 5-minute video from Steven Johnson’s talk here:

Steven Johnson, where Good Ideas Come From

The next time you’ve got a good idea, don’t worry that someone will steal it. If anything, you’ll be robbing yourself of a potentially great idea by not sharing it with others.

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