January 13 2016

How to Start Your Startup (Part 1): The Idea Phase

This is part one in our series “How to Start Your Startup”. We are giving you insights from the experts for each step of the starting your startup process. At the end, we will have an infographic for you, which links to each blog post so that’s pretty cool. Yeah? Yeah! Let’s learn!

ideareal-01

 

Write down all your ideas. ALL of them.

 

If you’ve got the entrepreneurial spirit, you’re probably an idea person. You are constantly coming up with possible business ideas. Some good. Some not so good. Some terrible. Some embarrassingly terrible. Oh gosh, remember that one?

 

It’s easy to ignore a bad one, once you realize that’s what it is. Especially if you’ve had one (or a few) failures under your belt. You may be tempted to be more cautious in your ideation. But let us urge you not to do that. Throw every idea you’ve got in that brain of yours onto the idea board. Write them all down.

 

Why?

 

Because quantity is just as important as quality, or at least a precursor of it. Studies have shown that groups who produce more ideas also produce better ideas. Think of bad ideas as your brain practicing for the good ones.

 

Also, bad ideas can sometimes be good ideas in development. If you write down every idea you have and then revisit them from time-to-time, new information may be able to reshape one of those bad ideas into a good one.

 

And a note on those good ideas: Even the best ideas can flop because they have not been fleshed out enough. It’s rare than an idea in its early inception is perfect or is what it will look like in its successful fruition. When you have that lightbulb go off, immediately write down the idea. As the process of developing the idea continues, continue to write down the details and thoughts and questions that arise surrounding it. Whiteboarding or journaling throughout the lifecycle of an idea can bring clarity and focus and reveal problems and solutions that you may have otherwise missed. The simple act of writing something down forces your brain to focus more on it.

 

Furthermore, the human memory is unreliable. A real disappointment, if you ask me. (Sorry, Brain. I know you’re reading this as I write it. But you’re also writing it… so… ) Writing your thoughts and little side-notes down may come in handy further down the road. You may run across a genius marketing thought you quickly jotted down months before. Or a possible tangential business idea.

 

Even writing this blog post is giving me a genius idea… I have to go!

 

This is the first post in our series “How to Start Your Startup.” Check out Part 2: Market Research!

This post was written by Katlyn Whittenburg, the Social Media Manager at Lamp Post Group. Stay up to date on what we are doing! Follow us on:

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