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photo credit: niznoz

We are well into 2019. Personal resolutions, professional goals, and business targets have by now been drafted if not established. Top on the list is the perennial priority: to find the ideas that can morph into new sources of innovation and growth, and then make them real.

How do you come up with these ideas? How do you know you are onto an innovation with potential appeal to a strong market segment — one that you want to serve? What makes you move an idea from a passing thought to being worthy of resources?

There are lots of unsolved problems waiting for the next big new products, services and experiences.

The good news is, there is no magic to finding the ideas. Insights that can become solutions in the market are discoverable – by you – if you can adopt a few simple behaviors. By this I mean basic, low-cost activities that produce special impact when you take a do-it-yourself path. You do not have to be a creative genius. To get going, you do not even need a big budget. There are some basic requirements.

Five Steps To Progress

If you are among those change makers starting the year on the quest for that next big idea, no matter what sector, company, or position you are in:

  1. Always have on hand a notebook, pen, and charged phone with a working camera.
  2. Put yourself in situations where you can observe and interact with those people you want to serve. Not sure who they are? Start broad, and plan to filter.
  3. Watch, listen, take notes and maybe even take pictures … record observations.
  4. Be open – do not limit your exploration to the confines of your idea. Seek to understand the fuller context. Pose open-ended questions when you have the chance to engage, and put out stimuli that evoke feedback.
  5. Repeat…make it a habit.

Two caveats:

  • Set aside old takes on what you believe is the answer. If not, you run the risk of simply pursuing confirmation of your own biases, and asking people to validate what you already believe.
  • Avoid any variant of the question, “what would you do if …” This line of questioning encourages speculation; people often don’t know what they would do, and will be uncomfortable admitting ignorance.

There really is no magic to seeking the insights that will set you on the path to big new opportunities. Listen. Observe. Be open. You will quickly see impact.

Happy seeking. And, if I can help you make progress towards your seeking objectives, please just let me know.

Find everyday tips on discovering the next big idea, and other aspects of the Seek, Seed, and Scale methodology to execute innovation for results in The Change Maker’s Playbook.


Photo credit: Niznoz












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