You’re not alone in fact everyone I have ever met has at least one burning in the back of their brain. You see the Great Idea is one thing that we humans cling to in our misguided belief that we are special. Of course we are not special when it comes to ideas as, just as you are having your epiffany someone on the other side of the world had that thought ten years ago, and you know what makes it worse theirs was better. Oh sure we struggle with the fact and look for weaknesses with their idea kidding ourselves that our way is better….but is it.

As with everything in life there is more than on way to look at a situation and if nothing else other people looking at the same idea can actually be a huge help. We have this misguided belief that you have to be first with an idea in order to be successful, but Facebook and Twitter and a myriad of other successful companies didn’t come first so why should you.


That we like to believe that our idea is the next sliced bread ( actually only a convenience, not a game changer in bread making) and that is we inherantly hate working and we all dream of that good life with a misguided belief that somehow a great idea will require no work. I kid you not the amount of people that I talk with who think their great idea will lead to instant riches and an easy life never ceases to amaze me.

And the Internet has helped reinforce that thinking, all I have to do is put it there and Wamo instant success. No one talks about coding till three in the morning seven days a week while not making any money hoping that your idea will find a space, or be a game changer. I have spent years talking to people who have spent all their’s and their families, friends money struggling to develop their great idea only to stumble on a simple thing like………..


This is a question that is best asked at the beginning of a project not at the end yet it is often the thing we last think of. Oh sure we think we are building something the market want’s (after all we needed it, couldn’t find it, found one and it was rubbish, etc) but that is not the same thing as marketing it. I am sick of hearing the same call around test your idea on your customer and adjust your product accordingly and people asking everyone they come across…….


This is not market research this is simply asking people what they think and everyone likes to be asked and everyone has an opinion. There is a question that should precede this, and it is “Would you be prepared to PAY for a …….. that did this? and if they say NO  that is a very useful response.

It might be useful to ask “WHY” and take on board their opinion. But if they are not going to pay they are not your target market. I have talked with start ups that have an idea based on what they would like to use themselves, based on the fact that they have no money and this product would help them and that’s the problem their target market doesn’t have any money, so how on earth did they expect to make money.   I am the first to agree that passion is  more  important  than knowledge and being resilient is far more useful than a business plan, but unfortunately there is an order of things in the universe and building a scalable business is one of them. Which brings us to…….


The key word here is effort and with all things effort is both subjective and actual, so what does that actually mean.

Effort comes in many guises and relates in no small way to enjoyment, people who are in love with their idea will travel a lot further than people without passion for the game. But the opposite also applies in that people who love their idea are often loath to share it (this is a common death of a good idea). If you are going into a business it might help to think around what am I prepared to “give away”, notice I say “give” rather than “sell” for it is the psychology behind giving that frees us from the belief that owning is more important than success.

Now I am the first to agree that giving away things is not always a good idea but if you want people to love your idea as much as you try the tried and tested drug dealer approach, give a little away and get them hooked.

The real trick is knowing WHO to give it to and this is where I shall go in my next installment.







About Nick

I don't say things to be liked I say them because I mean them. Reputation doesn't come from being liked it comes from standing for something.


  1. Keith Lightfoot June 8, 2011 at 1:26 am #

    Well said!

    We all come up with “fantastic ideas” and after mulling them around for a few days, and asking our well meaning friends for their “free opinion”, we delude ourselves into believing that everybody will-want-what-we-have, whereas in most cases, nothing could be further from the truth.

    Every so often we will actually think of a brilliant idea, but how many of us are prepared to sacrifice everything to bring the concept to reality.

    “Everyone who’s ever taken a shower has had an idea. It’s the person who gets out of the shower, dries off and does something about it who makes a difference.”
    Nolan Bushnell, Founder of Atari.

  2. Caroline June 8, 2011 at 1:33 am #

    Hi Nick – good to see your blog – what’s with the knives??? hope you will be writing frequently so i can indulge myself in my soon to start days of freedom from ECCC by reading it!
    Cheers, Caroline

  3. Mike Eastwood June 8, 2011 at 4:04 am #

    Hey Nick,
    Good to hear you’re sound advice in a time where “start-ups” are spreading like a disease.
    I look forward to reading more on here.

  4. Bill June 8, 2011 at 5:14 am #

    Nice to hear from you! This all looks quite nicely put together- I’ll have a closer look through it tomorrow.

    At first glance though, I noticed “SO YOU THINK HAVE A GREAT IDEA Your not alone in fact everyone I have ever met has at least one burning in the back of their brain.” I think you actually want to have “you’re” (you are) as opposed to “your” (possessive). It’s a minor thing, but I think it’s important for a first impression to make sure the little details like grammar and spelling are in order.

    LOVE the “about me” quote!!

  5. Lyndon Hawk June 8, 2011 at 9:27 am #


    Good to see your blog. I enjoy your straight forward no nonsense approach that challenges us to think and engage. Inspires and motivates us to do better.

    Ideas are great, however until they are executed the shame is that they are just ideas. Good ideas are like your equation, simple and elegant.


    The difficulty is that a good idea takes energy, passion, commitment and execution to deliver the result.

    As with most ideas we never start at the end and take the journey backwards. This often means that some of the challenges such as price or understanding whether the market will value our idea are often not dealt with at a critical level.

    So Nick continue to challenge, inspire and engage us so that we all grow and develop the ideas to a successful conclusion.

    Like drops of rain some will fall on fertile ground whilst others will fall on barren ground, or on hard unyielding surfaces and be washed away to the ocean of collective consciousness.

    And someday will resurface as a new drop of rain and come back to refresh another idea. Such is the beauty of thought.

  6. Merrin Robinson June 10, 2011 at 10:50 am #

    Hi Nick,

    Love the new blog! And your song and writing, not sure about the knives 🙂 Great theme you picked. It’s got a bit of everything on here which is cool to see.


  7. Colette Nikolic June 10, 2011 at 2:28 pm #

    Admiring the time and effort you put into your website and detailed information you present. It’s great to come across a blog every once in a while that isn’t the same out of date rehashed material. Wonderful read! I’ve bookmarked your site and I’m including your RSS feeds to my Google account.

  8. Jillian Sullivan June 21, 2011 at 3:38 am #

    Hi Nick,

    I have enjoyed looking around your multi-creative website. Cool song, cool knives!


  9. Luigi Cappel July 11, 2011 at 5:05 am #

    Nice read. I think one of the key concepts for satisfaction is passion and the other is motive. Money is a tough motive.

    I know a number of people who have laboured for years to become an overnight success and some who will just enjoy the journey.

    One of my weaknesses is not asking for advice often enough, while being asked for it and giving it freely often. I have many more weaknesses, but lots of passion:)

  10. gwyncer1 July 28, 2011 at 7:53 pm #

    NIck, great blog and quite right in each aspect. Energy still a source of realising a vision, and maybe why some with ideas don’t go down the market research line so much is they are drawn by their passion no matter what However, I agree, that if you are truly committed to the vision, the hard work will include all the components of asking why


    • admin July 28, 2011 at 9:23 pm #

      Hi Gwyn, thanks so much for your kind comment comment. How is business going for you at the moment and how might I help. Drop me a line and my next blog ” The POWER of being DIFFERENT comes out on Monday. All comments gratefully received.



  11. Telekinesis October 10, 2011 at 8:44 pm #

    Our mind has great capabilities! Great post…

    • admin March 22, 2012 at 3:10 pm #

      Thanks so much for your positive message, sorry it has taken me so long to reply.


  12. Martin Rooke May 11, 2012 at 2:44 pm #


    “yes” I have a great idea, and
    “yes” I have the ‘Start Up Disease’, and
    “yes” I developed a prototype before (true) market validation, and
    “yes” a well meaning friend said “You need to talk with Nick” and
    “yes” he doesn’t mince his words and he challenged my progress and
    “yes” he also had practical advice on the way forward and he does seem to know a lot of people

    So…….many thanks for your help and for keeping me grounded.

    Martin Rooke – inventor of Morfit – lumbar support

    • Nick May 17, 2012 at 3:02 pm #

      Hi Martin, thanks so much for the amazing comment and I am looking forward to catching up again very soon. Cheers Nick

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