I used to be so fascinated by ideas especially when I first started my entrepreneurial journey. I even had an Idea Book- a book in which I documented my ideas. Despite still understanding the power of having great ideas, I am not fascinated by ideas anymore. I have grown up! lol! Only ideas that have a clear cut execution plan for conversion thrill me now. And I think it should be so for everyone who is looking forward to pitching a business idea to investors who will be willing to give them the required funding. It is skillful idea conversion, not just ideas, that will make you rich.
There are many reasons ideas do not make people rich. Some of the most important reasons are
Did the idea for facebook make Mark Zuckerberg rich? No! Hardwork did. Many hours of coding in those early days did. Many people who have fantastic ideas think that the fact that the idea is fantastic in the first place will make it work and ultimately make them rich. No way! Any idea you do not put the necessary hardwork into will come back to frustrate you in ways you never imagined.
I once thought this way too. This kind of thinking make people to rather than “working” on their idea to try “hiding” or protecting the idea in order to prevent it from being “stolen”. I too used to think that any idea I get is mine alone. But that is far from the reality. If you get an any idea about something, many (probably thousands of) other people get the same idea. My Pastor, Dr. Isaiah Wealth said that ideas can be accessed by people when they start thinking at “ultra high thinking frequencies.” Makes a lot of sense, right?
Some ideas are “timed”. That means that if someone does not execute the idea within a time frame, it will become useless. For example, if you had an idea of a floppy disk that could also take pictures in the 1990s and did not execute the idea then, the idea would have become obsolete by now. Why? Because computers don’t come with diskette (or floppy) drives anymore. Idea conversion must be with accurate timing.
Also there are ideas for the future. In other words, if that idea is executed now, it will be ignored by its target market because the timing is not right. For example, if the idea for selfie sticks was executed in the 1990s, no one would have noticed it then because camera phones were not as proliferated then as they are now.
Again, there is another twist to this point. While going through the process of idea conversion, you must not rush development. In Quality Project Management, there is a cost one must always consider. It is called “time to do it right”. One must not rush that time.
No matter how beautiful and important your idea is, you must not miss the people factor in it. One of the reasons many wannabe entrepreneurs are not able to effectively carry out idea conversion is that they do not go through the all-important process of getting great team members. No matter how fantastic your idea is, any savvy investor will insist on knowing who will be joining you to make the idea a reality. So, your idea is useless without the right set of people being involved in it. Without input from Paul Allen and Steve Ballmer in the early days, maybe Microsoft won’t have become big as it is today. Even Bill Gates needed a great team.
Looking at this in another light, your idea must be able to either solve a problem or meet a need in people’s life for it to be viable. Otherwise there is no need for idea conversion.
This is the most important reason of all. For example, effective idea conversion cannot be possible without certain skills. Any person who wants to successfully convert ideas to business must therefore have those skills. For example, he/she must have negotiating skills, leadership skills, interpersonal skills and so on. Ideas are important but they are not as important as the need to develop oneself. Self development is one of the most difficult things today in the midst of too much on-demand entertainment. But one must be disciplined.
So, do you have an idea you are working on converting? While at it, develop yourself. When investors part with their money, they are investing more in the person bearing the idea than in the idea itself. You are too important!!!
Do you want your idea to make you rich? Take care of the factors above. Idea conversion will not work if you don’t.