The starting point for any new venture or product is the idea. What product or service will our business offer that will be a winner?

A great many people can’t get past this idea phase. It seems to me that many of them stall out because they are waiting to hit upon some kind of revolutionary new idea – a concept of such power that it will appeal to everyone. They want bells to go off in their heads. They want brilliance. They want a blockbuster idea.

The fact is, there’s not a lot that’s new under the sun. Most businesses, even highly successful businesses, are founded on a very ordinary, very mundane idea, pretty far removed from brilliance. It’s luck, timing, and execution that transforms a ho-hum idea into a good business. Key chains, mugs, corkscrews, backpacks, chairs, sunglasses, shoes, etc. are established ordinary products, yet new companies are entering the market place with them, and many succeed.

All of us would like to come up with a show-stopper of an idea that will cause customers to flock to us when they recognize the brilliance of our creation. This scenario is rare. You can take comfort in the fact that most new businesses and products are based on an existing, well known, and possibly boring entity. Their success is founded on new and better executions. Higher quality, value added features, new areas of distribution, outworking competition, better timing, superior service, license added, etc.

Think of Scrabble where you add one letter to an existing word, and you get full credit for the other person’s word. You don’t have to reinvent the wheel.


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