Why did you start your current business? Did you have a Eureka moment about a new product or service? Was it an idea you came up with after several other ideas failed to get off the ground?
Chances are that your idea(s) or your inspiration came from several sources. Think about it. No-one just plucks an idea from the air. In truth, we take ideas from wherever we find them. They can come from a mesmerising scene, a play you attended, a story you read, a beautiful sunset you witnessed, what you heard someone saying, or because something was broken and you needed to come up with a solution to fix it. Perhaps a few of you got together to consider a variety of creative ideas? Whatever the inspiration, external information joins forces with your internal knowledge and is processed through the neural network of your brain to produce that Aha moment.
Our best ideas often come when we surround ourselves with people who are different, who have different mindsets or are in different industries. So, although we are encouraged to connect with like-minded entrepreneurs, it doesn’t mean they should have the same background or culture, or the same anything. Diverse thoughts and opinions can help to get your neurons firing and making connections towards the formation of an idea.
If you’re seeking innovation or creativity to enable a new product or service to be developed, or to take your business in a new direction, don’t look inward. Instead, look to your local networks to find a rich diversity of people within a readymade and captive audience. Don’t be afraid to share your ideas. People will be more likely to warm to you and trust you if you share openly and will respond favourably in return.
Further, don’t be afraid to approach someone who appears to have nothing in common with you; they may have the connections you need to take your new product to market. Or, they may be looking to work in collaboration. Or they may inspire your next big idea.
You can’t know someone’s value to you and your business until you connect. And, you can only connect if you’re in a rich and diverse environment to find free-flowing ideas – your network events and meetings.