Giving Birth to an Idea

education, elementary school, learning and people concept - grouOur world has no shortage of ideas. People dream up ways to change the world—or at least their small corner of it—ever day. But ideas are just ideas until someone gives them life. The problem is that bringing an idea to life takes time, resources, people, and risk. So how do ou give birth to an idea?

Write it down

Ideas seem much less real when they just bounce around in your head. If there’s a dream, a nagging idea, or just a “We really should…” that won’t go away, write it down and share it with someone. It’s risky, but ideas that stay in your head never become reality.

Ask yourself, “Why?”

Ideas are only good ideas if they have a purpose. If your idea doesn’t fit the direction your organization is going, it may not work or even be counter-productive—even if it is a good idea. And if your idea represents a new direction for your organization, be ready to make a case for it; change isn’t something people readily accept.

Ask for advice

Even if you feel like you have a completely revolutionary idea, chances are that someone, somewhere has at least some experience with what you want to try. Seek someone out who can offer you some direction or at least let you know which land mines to avoid.

Try it on a small scale

Not every idea is all-or-nothing. The implications might be big if it succeeds, but that doesn’t mean that you have to go all in before you know if the idea will work. Find a way to try it out in a way that will let you know whether it will work while minimizing the risk.

Jump in

If you want to give birth to an idea, you do have make the leap at some point. It may be a tired basketball cliché, but it’s true: you miss 100% of the shots you don’t take. You’ve done your homework, you’ve tried it on a small scale, and you think it’s what you’re supposed to do. If you want something to work, you need to jump in with both feet.

I’d love to hear from you! What else does it take to give birth to an idea?

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