It doesn’t matter where a good idea comes from. Just that it exists.
Ever since I was a kid, maybe 8 years old, I knew what I wanted to do. Pretended to run my own company. Branded my future with a catchy name and shiny logo. Dreamed of all I would conquer and achieve. Even at a young age I realized revenue potential in basic concepts. I was wide eyed and inspired. Able to accomplish anything the world could throw at me all by myself. Then I grew up.
After establishing my first company and hiring employees I came to realize something rather important. If you filter where you get advice from you will fail. Maybe not today. Maybe not tomorrow. But the lifespan of your business is greatly diminished by valuing the insight of only your superiors.
Listen to amateurs and experts
Amateurs are simply future experts without hard time experience. They do not lack the ideas or business sense. They simply lack age. Today’s office runner or newspaper delivery guy may have an idea that ignites revenue for an entire industry or increase your brand awareness substantially. But how will you know unless you listen?
Some of the most successful experts listen to amateurs if their ideas are useful. It doesn’t matter where a good idea comes from. Just that it exists.
Build relationships with everyone
Engagement isn’t just a buzz word for Social Media metrics. It’s a rule of life. You need to be here and present every day to be successful. Build trust with everyone.
Whether you are the employee or the boss, you need to build relationships with everyone on some level. I’m not saying you need to know their favorite colors or what they ate last Sunday night. But listening to everyone around you provides you with knowledge. It instills trust. Combine knowledge with trust and you now have a relationship. See. It’s not that difficult.
Someone took a chance on you
Remember how amazing it felt when someone valued your ideas?
Not many of us are given the keys to a successful kingdom through birth. We venture out, make mistakes, establish ourselves and grow. We all began in the same place. No experience. No resume. No relationships. But someone else saw the ambition in our eyes. The prospect that we could provide something of value. Someone took that chance, opened the door and provided you with the opportunity to succeed. Don’t forget that.
Remember how amazing it felt when someone valued your ideas? How it felt when you did well and landed that promotion or closed a big deal? Why not look around your office, conference room, event hall or even your coffee shop and open the door for someone new. You may have a simple question that can be answered by someone outside of your regular circle. Have them answer it. Give them a chance. And if they succeed introduce them to everyone with open arms.
Your needs were met through an open mind and you, as a person or business, are one stronger because of it. Imagine how good the other person feels. We all want to be part of a larger whole. To have our voice heard. Success is contagious.
Photo Credit: Jonathan Powell