Something, such as a thought that exists in the mind as a product of mental activity; an opinion, conviction, or principle; a plan, scheme, or method; a general meaning or purport. According to The American Heritage Concise Dictionary, that’s what an idea is. You could go through different printed and online dictionaries, encyclopedias and thesauruses and note out dozens of definitions, but they would only differ in their use of vocabulary and length of the definition while the meaning would be the same. An idea is a thought that just pops in your head, one that you can dismiss or build on, one that can change your world. In today’s world it’s important to have specific skills, good education, some experience and a lot of passion, but you won’t get too far without an idea. It can be an idea of opening a new business, of reorganizing an old one, an idea that will change the way things are done or one that will make people do completely new things. It’s the driving force of any business, and without it the world would stand still, so it’s important to learn to look past the skills or lack thereof and see the ideas no matter where they come from. Think about it this way, the most talented fashion, interior or web designer will not come up with a new design without first having an idea of how it should look, what it should be all about, but wit the right idea, a chiropractor, a bellboy or a taxi driver can come up with a great law firm marketing strategy or a screenplay for a hit movie. It’s not about who you are, what you do and what your skills are, but about how far you can stretch your imagination. And as a boss it’s abut seeing those stretch marks, so to speak. Looking for the next big idea may be tiring and time consuming, but in the long run it pays off, so roll up your sleeves and get started. First off you need to encourage your employees to come to you with their thoughts on improving the production process, offering new services, doing things bigger, better and faster. Go through even the most ridiculously sounding ideas and think of different ways to apply them in your business and you’re likely to find at least some of those ideas working for you. Search for new ideas outside. Just because somebody came up with a way to make things faster, doesn’t mean their idea can’t be improved upon, so you need to stay on top of industry trends and follow the ones that can be useful for you. Don’t stick solely to your particular industry. You can find a lot of great ideas that can be adjusted, redesigned or applied just as they are outside of your kind of business, you just have to recognize that a given idea is good and has great potential if properly utilized, and open up to change that’s coming your way.
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