How to kill a great idea?

There is a saying that “there is no place where there are more unfulfilled dreams than in the cemetery”. Many people spend their lives planning what they will do when reach a given place (position), or yet, when the conditions are appropriate. The problem is that the “perfect timing” never comes!

Such as individuals, many companies in their areas of expertise did not recognize change when it was happening and, as result, lost great opportunities. IBM, in a given moment the largest manufacturer of computers in the world, was not the inventor of the personal computer and when entered into the segment, instead of using its own operating system, made a deal with a small Californian company to use their operating system (DOS). Thanks to this agreement the “small” company, Microsoft, became a giant. The creator of the digital camera, Kodak, did not believe on its creation. The creator of the graphic interface was Xerox not Apple or Microsoft, the two companies that beneficiated the most from this invention.


And why individuals or companies lose opportunities that are reachable?

1)    Because they are not on an alert mode to recognize opportunities. The act of being alert is that of be always available to listen and ready to analyze and test what is presented. Opportunity comes from everywhere!; or
2)    Because they are too busy doing “their doings”. Common questions, mainly formulated in large companies, with which new ideas are (ill) received are:

a.    What is our “core” business? Does this idea fit on that?
b.    Why not set up a working group? (The decision maker does not want to frustrate the person proposing the new idea, nevertheless want it killed!); or yet
c.    Discuss each detail allowing and stimulating that everyone “contributes”, generating confusion and deciding that the one suggesting the idea go back to the clipboard to have the idea “improved”;

3)    Fear of committing a mistake or of losing. The fear of committing mistake is present on those that are already successful while the fear of losing is present on those that have what to lose;
4)    For being a hierarchical organization or with various “filtering” instances, that act like professional assassins of new ideas or new projects.

An organization (a truth valid also for individuals) must police itself to not become resistant to new ideas. It must search for mechanisms or adjust its structure to, despite its size, not lose the opportunity of taking advantage of a great idea, even if it puts the organization on the path or reinvention!

"Farmers who wait for perfect weather never plant. If they watch every cloud, they never harvest.” (Book of Ecclesiastes)
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