My ideation process

I come up with ideas all the time, which is one of the main reasons I have evernote. I couldn’t keep track of everything in a regular notepad. I have mentioned before that I have an entire notebook that is based on “Projects”. My ideas come to me at different times of day, in different situations, and while working on other things. It’s random, but I like to write them down so that later I can say, “What the heck is this?” it’s fun.

For the ideas that I am really fond of, I typically will shop it around. In my “shop around” phase, I will talk to people about the idea just to see what they think.  I try to be clear that this is something I am trying to get a feel for and that I am not actively working on it.   If I find that people are passionate about the idea I am shopping around, I will move forward. If I can’t find even one person, then I move on and bank that idea for later in case someone says something to me that sparks a memory of this idea and I can pass on what I learned.

Next steps usually involve measures of planning, budget ideas, and trying to get people on board with me. Getting people interested in action towards a goal is tough and if I can’t find anyone, the idea might die here as well.

I love the idea of being known as “the genius behind” something. Many of my ideas are such that I know I will need specific types of people to make it happen, because I admittedly don’t know a lot about a lot of things. Maybe some day I will be the guy who made the thing all by myself. Someday. Soon.

Despite this, my fear is that people think I am flaky. While that may be true to some extent, I am not flaky about ideas I commit real time to. I just want to make sure that there is some interest, demand, or excitement about things before I commit real time to them. Hopefully, this makes sense.

What’s the startup mantra again? “Always pitching; Fail often.” Or something like that…

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