Ever heard that saying that everyone has a novel in them?
Well, I reckon there’s also a Big Business Idea in most people and it just takes some people a bit more time to get around to it.
The older you get, naturally, the more experienced you become, and this gives you great insight into what your industry is lacking.
You’re able to see gaps in the market or shift a business model slightly so that it’s more innovative and agile.
And then you have your aha moment.
Often the instinctive reaction when people think up a great idea is to keep it to themselves.
I can understand that to a degree.
We all fear that others will copy us — and sometimes with good reason too — and we should definitely be selective about who we tell our idea to.
But that doesn’t mean we should remain tight-lipped about our great idea as a rule of thumb.
In fact, I’m an advocate of telling the right people all about your new idea.
Why? Here’s a few good reasons.
1. It tests the idea
Find someone smarter than you, who is not in the exact same industry and is not going to copy you, and run the idea past them.
If they point out why it’s not a great idea, it saves you years and years of toiling away for nothing.
If, on the other hand, they love the idea, then it will give you a much-needed confidence boost.
It’s very hard to know whether your idea has legs without running it past a trusted advisor.
This could be a former colleague or it could be your partner.
2. You get new ideas
If you discuss your idea, it may lead to a new and better idea or the evolution of the same idea.
Plus, other talented people can be a fountain of information about business and the marketplace, and can often plug the gaps in your own knowledge base.
You can’t know everything about the market, but by talking to people you trust you can hone your idea into something that will work.
It might mean that your idea changes shape as you re-work it over time, but that kind of flexibility is important if your business is ever to see the light of day.
3. You give yourself a deadline
Here’s what happens when you start talking about business ideas: people start asking you when it’s going to happen.
An expectation then forms around you to make it happen, and that’s a good thing.
We’re all motivated to some degree by what other people think of us and if others are waiting on a great business idea to come to life, then that can be a great motivator.
So tell a few trusted people about your idea.
No doubt they’ll keep asking you about it and this will be a great incentive to keep working in it.
4. It Brings it to life
Finally, great ideas aren’t developed in a vacuum.
You cannot achieve big things alone.
Even the most intelligent entrepreneurs understand they’re only as strong as those who help realise their vision.
Your idea is destined to stay on the shelf until you tell people about it.
But here’s the caveat: make sure you’re selective in who you tell.
Direct competitors are an obvious no.
As are people who are likely to pinch your idea.
Instead, talk to people who are successful and trustworthy in their field.
Not only can they give you feedback on your idea, but they can also connect you with people who can actually bring it to reality.
Which is the goal, after all!