How Do You Respond to Opportunities?
When someone offers you a new idea for improving your business (or your life), how do you react? Do you look for the flaws and try to justify why it’s a bad idea? Do you dismiss it as something you can’t do because it may require too much work, time or money? Or do you find ways to apply it – in full or in part?
Today more than ever, building sales and profit in business requires more creativity. Customers won’t simply show up on your doorstep or hand over their hard-earned money to you. Fortunately, you don’t need to reinvent the wheel to find ideas to grow or improve your business.
You simply need to pay attention to what others are doing and saying — with a different attitude. Instead of dismissing their ideas or suggestions, look for the strengths and potential. Then ask yourself ‘How can I apply it in my business or life? What changes can I make to improve it’?
3 Reasons Why People Dismiss Ideas
Why do so many people quickly dismiss ideas that might benefit them? Here are three pitfalls you should avoid.
Lack of Time. We’re bombarded with information, overwhelmed with work and don’t want to contemplate taking on something new. But with an open mind, you may just uncover something that is far better than what you are currently working on. To key is to capture the idea before it is lost, then consider it later when you are less overwhelmed.
Ideas often arrive unexpectedly and are lost quickly. So the next time something peaks your curiosity, write it down in a notebook, computer or your smartphone. Don’t evaluate it, simply capture the idea for future consideration. Periodically or as part of your quarterly planning, pull out your list of ideas and pick one to research, develop and implement.
When you have an easy way to capture ideas, your mind becomes a magnet for them – and you ultimately have control over which you choose to pursue and which you choose to dismiss.
Lack of Trust. Sometimes, we dismiss ideas because we don’t trust or like the source. Recognize that ideas can come from good or bad people. Even questionable business practices often have, at their core, a perfectly good marketing or customer insight. Break it down and reinvent some of the elements to fit your values and business practices.
Lack of Understanding. Sometimes, we dismiss ideas simply because we don’t understand them. If the results seem too good to be true, don’t simply dismiss it out of hand. Take the time to ask more questions and truly understand. Your decision to act or dismiss is now based on some level of knowledge.
Life is full of opportunities to be happier and more successful. Sometimes these opportunities smack us in the face, they are obvious. But often, they arrive as fleeting remarks or suggestions by friends, colleagues, customers or even a chance encounter with a stranger.
If you open your mind and eliminate the tendency to rationalize why ideas won’t work – you may just uncover a world of untapped potential. Listen to your team, your customers, and your “little voice,” – and seize the day. Then you and your business can, and will, become so much more!
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