Are you losing out by hoarding your ideas?

The bell is ringing. The light bulb flashes on. You’ve had a great idea. This could be the idea that makes your business. However, you keep it to yourself. For a start, this idea is so fantastic, whoever you tell is certain to steal it and implement it themselves straight away. Plus, the idea is not fully formed yet, you’ll tell people when it’s fleshed out some more. Hold on though, what if your idea isn’t that great after all? They might laugh, or tell you it’ll never work.

OK, these things may happen if you tell people your fantastic idea. However, the upsides of telling people your ideas far outweigh the downsides. This is why you shouldn’t hoard your ideas.

Accountability

We’ve all got great ideas swimming in our heads, most of which we’ll never act upon. They remain there, in our heads, taking up space. A good idea is much more likely to become reality when it is set free. That could mean just writing it down somewhere, but it’s even more effective if you tell somebody. If you’ve told someone this amazing idea that you’re really excited about implementing, you can bet next time you see them they’ll ask about it. Are you able to look them in the eye and say ‘Nah. Didn’t do it.’? Sharing idea creates accountability, which might just be what you need.

Feedback

Sure, the person you share your idea with may laugh, or pour cold water on it. The chances are they won’t though. The chances are they’ll find it interesting. The chances are they’ll ask you questions. They’ll offer an opinion, but it’s likely to be constructive rather than mocking. Their questions may uncover a hole in your plan that needs fixing, or something you can add to your plan to make it even better. The more people you share your idea with, the more proof you have that your concept is viable. It’s also a great test of how you react to criticism. Sure, people might laugh, but will you have the last laugh?

Networking

You may not want to share your idea with people in your industry, because they might steal it. This is really unlikely to happen, for so many reasons. It’s likely that the person you tell won’t be in a position to implement your idea straight away, even if they wanted to. And just say they did steal it, they wouldn’t implement it as well as you, because it was your idea. What’s more likely is that they’ll try to help. They’ll offer constructive feedback, and it’s possible that they might know someone who’ll be able to help with your idea at a later stage. You have this network, now’s the time you need to use it.

My story

I’ve spent the last 4 months starting a copywriting business. It’s going well, thanks for asking. Some reading this on LinkedIn might know me from my old profession, and not even know that I’ve gone down a different path. When I decided to start the business, I knew I had to overcome the nerves and just tell everyone. I needed to make use of my network, and it’s working well for me. A few people have told me it’s a bad idea, and maybe they’ll be right, but I don’t think they will. We writers want our work to be seen by as many people as possible. My ideas are yours for the taking.

Next time you have an idea that you know is a winner, set it free. You don’t know what you’ll get back in return. If you’d like to share your ideas with me, and talk about how powerful writing can help them succeed, I’d love to hear from you.