Chapter 3 Use

The next thing innovators do better than everyone else is that they use their ideas. They do something with them. The cleverest idea in the world won't be worth anything if it remains in the space between our ears. Innovation requires us to act.

However, taking your idea out of your mind and into the real world can be daunting. There are problems to solve, obstacles to overcome, managers to convince, bureaucratic inertia to defeat, and perhaps money to find. All of that takes time and energy, and aren't you busy enough already?

And what if you go to all that effort only to discover that your idea doesn't work! Or that it will cost too much? Or you will have to fight so many battles along the way, and make so many compromises, that it will cause you more pain than it's worth?

These are all, unfortunately, legitimate concerns.

Everyone who has had an innovative idea has faced some, if not all, of these obstacles. But if they hadn't pressed on regardless, then we wouldn't have toasters or flowerpots or tyres. There's only one way to find out how good an idea is, and that is to test it out in the real world.

Do the next thing

Once you have had an idea, and have grown it, it's time to start using it. Here's a way to make using your idea seem more manageable. Don't think about the eighty-six things you need to do to turn your idea into a reality. Just think about the next thing. Work out the next thing you need to do to develop your idea. It might be:

  • writing it ...

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