STARTUP PARADIGM

Idea or Ideal

In which one should we focus?

I think, many of us at some point in our lives, have wished to come up with that “million dollar idea” that will make us extremely rich and lead us to a successful life like any other millennial leader such as Mark Zuckerberg, Steve Jobs or any popular leader of this era. But if we stop and actually analyze these success stories we can tell that it is much more than a simple matter of ideas.

I recently had the opportunity to attend INCmty: a celebration of entrepreneurship and innovation disguised as a 3 day festival in Mexico where people with ideas and investors connect and meet each other. In this event you get to learn from amazing people doing extraordinary things with their startups, listen to their stories of success (and some of their failures), their experiences and advice to thousands of people who, like them, have an “idea” worth fighting for and want to make it into a reality.

Listening to these people made me confirm something I had thought of before:

IDEAS ARE OVERRATED.

With this, I don’t mean that ALL ideas do not have any value, but that in order to achieve something great it is so much better to come up with a good action plan. This people got to be there for one simple fact and thing in common:

THEY ARE PEOPLE OF ACTION.

Ideas happen all the time, it is not about the quality or sense of this idea but the way you handle them: only the ones that go through a planned process and methodology actually get to happen.

Many of the people who have been successful in their business, not necessarily achieved this only by “being a genius”, but by discipline.

The constant struggle to get things done until its idea stopped sounding stupid and started having a shape, body, process & growth. For them, the idea could be very simple, maybe something someone else suggested them or something they heard elsewhere, but in the end what really mattered was the way in which they implemented those ideas and managed to make them work and eventually transcend.

“Dreams don´t work unless you do.”

Another thing that makes these types of people different from others with “good ideas” is that they transform their ideas into ideals.

An ideal is a set of ideas that in some way become unreachable, but also infinitely approachable , i.e. the goal is no longer something with a beginning and an end, but something with the constant ability to be improved. One idea is something that can have an end; an ideal is something that will never end as you continue to act. As long as you are in motion, there is always opportunity to do better.

“Having my clothes shops around the world” like Johnny Cupcake would say or “To be the best Chef in the world” like Chef Jacques Torres are two examples of simple ideas or even daydreams. What sets them apart and makes them into “ideals” is that these words created patterns of behavior and actions in those people that let them achieved what they always wanted.

To be the best in the world or have the best shop, they knew they had to be best in theirs local community first, then the best in theirs cities and so on. To achieve that, they looked for the best knowledge, tools and people to help them to reach their goals. And when they did, they understood that to stay that way, they need to keep working, knowing that if they stop improving one day, others will take their place.

Watching and hearing the experiences of successful people have taught me that we should focus more on creating an ideal first than just wait for that “million dollar idea” to happen and commit to that ideal.

Once we have married to that ideal, focus on implementing ideas and actions that will help you get your goals. Only getting shit done, practicing, validating and starting again we will know which idea is good and which one isn’t.

“Set a goal, but if you don’t see the target, you can’t hit it”. — Daymond John

Originally posted in www.c37.mx by Mario Zam