Have You Tried This Idea Process?

by Dave Jackson

Anybody knows that if you can get some great minds together, you’ll probably have some great ideas percolate up. And so many times we depend on other people that we short circuit what great stuff we can come with ourselves. For example – there’s a ton of great ideas that can come simply from asking focused questions. Something about a well-worded question that just gets to the meat of what we’re after and triggers new ideas and insights.

When you’re trying to come up with the best ideas, stimulate your creating thinking by figuring out what your end result should be. What are you trying to do? And when you get frustrated with the whole thought process, step back and ask again – what are we trying to do?

The next question should be, how are we trying to do it. If you find it hard to get it done, or experience resistance from people, maybe your method is wrong. That’s where that question comes into play – how are we trying to do it? And is this the right way? Maybe there’s a better way? What if what you were doing was completely wrong? There may be another way to get the job done.

I know this is rough, especially if you are in a position of leadership, but facing the possibility that you may be wrong opens yourself up to new possibilities. Look at what’s right before deciding who is right.

Another good question to ask is what is our assumptions? You can ask this about your prospect, your products, your business. Maybe you’re assuming something that isn’t correct. I’ve heard the saying – Errant assumptions lie at the root of every failure.

What if your implied assumptions were wrong?

Here’s another tough one my wife and I do – put past decisions on trial. Sort of like looking at your track record and sometimes it’s not fun. You ask a question like – knowing what I know now, would I have made the same decision? Try to find similar ideas or decisions to what you are trying to cover now and look back.

I want you to be very clear about what you are trying to do. Write it down and then describe it as if you already achieved it. Next, always question your assumptions – especially in the marketing you do. And if there may be a better way… be willing to try something completely different.

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