9 Excellent Ideas for the New breed of Entrepreneurs
With the frozen economy, you definitely need to be innovative, fresh in ideas to churn out a new business. When interviewed nine different innovative entrepreneurs to shed light on how they come up with their best ideas to business, they share some great insight. From collaborating with others, to observing consumer behavior to taking naps. Read their tips for boosting your creativity.
1. “Interrupt the logical mind and allow space to Daydream”
“What inspires me is beauty, the human desire and capacity to create it. I listen to Glen Gould’s piano pieces or other acoustic music in the morning. My best ideas come randomly. I take naps and steam baths. You need to interrupt the logical mind and allow space to daydream.
Einstein said the theory of relativity came to him when he was riding a bike. The best ideas will not come from slamming three espressos and grinding it out, but rather at weird moments: in the middle of the night, when you are traveling on a train, when you are receptive to oblique inspiration and the suspension of disbelief. Zen teachers refer to this as ‘the beginner’s mind, where possibilities are many.’ We are all too finely tuned. Our mind uses us more than we use our mind.”
2. Listen and Reflect
“Every real insight I’ve had has come from being a good listener. I need to have time for quiet reflection to digest it and consider how it affects me, to figure out my voice and how I can contribute to that story.”
I wanted to see if I could do something valuable a second time, maybe even a third or fourth.
3. Expand the “adjacent possible”
“I have worked in so many different industries and niches: big companies, small companies, government, for-profit, non-profit, etc. For me, it is about expanding the adjacent possible. Steven Johnson, author of Where Good Ideas Come From, explains that the world is full of many possibilities, but only certain things can happen. Only by opening doors to new opportunities — a new adjacent possible — can you create what I call a palace of possibilities. I have more doors open — a larger palace of possibilities — than most people, so I can see connections others may not see. My best ideas come from this collage of experiences.”
4. Don’t seek out for Great ideas
“Great ideas will find you. I don’t think you find great ideas.”
As a venture capitalist, you don’t come up with ideas. The entrepreneurs come up with the ideas. It is a lot harder to be an entrepreneur than to be a venture capitalist. And the great ideas that lead to great businesses generally find the entrepreneur, not the other way around.
The ones where the entrepreneur is looking for the idea tend to result in flips. Look at Microsoft, EBay, Dropbox, Airbnb. None of those guys was looking to start a business. The ideas just hit them. The great ones just know.”
5. Collaborate with others
“I come up with my best ideas by engaging and talking with other people. Great ideas are not solitary things. Feedback from other people is the best catalyst.” I used to think networking was a superficial way of getting to know someone. Now I see it as always looking for opportunities to connect with other people.
Get the culture right in the organization, and do it early. It’s like putting the wrong engine in a car: If you don’t do it right the first time, everything else will be wrong.
6. Spend time away from your Industry
“I get my best ideas when I get off the grid and detach myself from my industry. Spending time thinking about fashion, toys, or architecture frees me up to think imaginatively.
It’s hard to be innovative when you are stuck in your own industry. You see artificial boundaries around what you can and can’t do.” Building a great culture from the start is important.
7. Observe the consumer behavior & culture
“I enjoy observing consumer behavior and culture. I like to envision what could be, and I ask myself: Why isn’t this better? How could it be better? I start to play out that scenario in my head. The best ideas come out of pain points I experience in my daily life and based on what I learned of gaps in financial services at Progreso. I am already working on my next company.”
8. Free up your Mind
“For some reason more ideas come to me when I am near water — even taking a bath. I just did a week long meditation retreat. Freeing up the mind is a good way to get to inspiration. We fill our lives with so little space. Inspiration looks for crevices to parachute into. The fewer crevices you create in your life, the less likely you are to have inspiration come through you.
You need to allow yourself to be a vessel so that something can come through you.”
9. Spread wings in life
My dad while growing up encouraged me and my brother to fail. Blakely’s embrace of failure has helped her make the youngest self-made female billionaire in America. The 41-year-old Florida native was selling fax machines door-to-door before she came up with the idea for Spanx, the body-shaping undergarments that have become a global sensation. It’s a difficult road from idea to the marketplace.
“What you don’t know can become your greatest asset if you’ll let it happen and if you have the confidence to say, I’m going to do it anyway even though I haven’t been taught or somebody hasn’t shown me the way.
Ultimately, it’s not about great ideas, it’s about making great ideas happen. Watch the interesting video by Steven Johnson on “Where Great ideas come from” and don’t forget to post your ideas below.
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