You know, over the years I’ve had a lot of really dumb “brilliant ideas”.
Brilliant ideas are unique, exciting, often big and/or revolutionary, and many times would really work if properly executed upon.
That’s the thing: ideas aren’t as valuable as they used to be. The information-age has made is possible for everyone to have great ideas (and most do). Execution is now the “juice” of innovation.
Non-actionable ideas are dumb ideas. They can’t be executed upon. Regardless of how brilliant an idea is, if my team and I can’t really get it done but we waste time dreaming and scheming and poking around with it – that’s a pretty dumb idea (even if it’s a brilliant idea).
Either we’re serious about executing upon an idea, and we’re willing to make the trade-offs/sacrifices necessary to make it happen…or we’re wasting time.
In my experience most dumb “brilliant ideas” are:
- Hard to write down on paper (i.e. COMPLEX)
- Hard to explain to the team without a lot of dialogue (i.e. FOREIGN)
- Those that will require me to a) do most of the work myself, or b) quickly bring in some new and amazing people to get it done (i.e. NOT A FIT for my current team’s capacity)
By contrast, then, smart “brilliant ideas” are those that are SIMPLE, UNDERSTANDABLE, and a GOOD FIT for our team and vision.
Jason Petersen owns Hansen Lighting Inc. a lighting company with multiple showrooms in Utah.
Jason acquired Hansen Lighting out of near-bankruptcy in 2004 and turned the company around by implementing outside-the-box systems and ideas. The company is now one of the fastest growing companies in America (#3087 on the Inc. 5000 Fastest Growing Companies list) and has been recognized as one of the most profitable privately-owned retailers in North America.
Jason is also the co-founder of XOLogic and Lit Living Inc.