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Introduction: Action

This video introduces the ways you can test your ideas out, develop networks, pitch ideas, and make something happen.
Welcome to the fourth week. By now, you should have some perspective on the timeline of innovation, the habits and processes that innovators have used to deliberately and accidentally solve problems and maybe even an idea that you’ve started testing. In this next section we’re going to focus on how you articulate that idea so that you can share it with others. We’re going to talk about the value of networking, how you might summarise your ideas in a snappy and concise way so you can share them more readily, and how you can pitch and influence people to buy into your idea. You will need other people on board for many reasons.
You’ll need a team, you’ll need customers, you might need investors and you’ll always need other people championing you and your ideas in places that you can’t get to. The history of innovation and invention is littered with people who were the first to discover something but had no idea how to bring the idea to market. The electric light bulb whose 1879 invention and patent is conventionally credited to Thomas Edison, was invented, at least in part, by over a dozen people in several countries and discoveries going back almost a century earlier. But most of them struggled to bring something to market, which is what Edison cracked. Likewise, sometimes the initial insight is not enough.
It has to find its way into a useable, approachable form. Alexander Fleming, the inventor of penicillin first published its discovery in 1929. It was over a decade later that it was suitable for mass production. It’s worth saying that very few ideas are protectable through intellectual property but, if you’re genuinely concerned, talk to someone in confidence. On balance, you have far more to gain from sharing than you have in slowing down your idea’s development by hiding it away. So this section is all about getting your idea out into the world so it can start evolving, developing, and improving through contact with others. You’ll need to keep solving problems, keep enhancing your luck and testing your assumptions through lean methods.
But now the focus on sharing and getting other people on board. This week we will use the methodology of the lean startup to showcase how you can think big, act small, fail fast, and learn quickly. This might sound very businesslike but it’s actually a very common-sense approach to turning any idea into a real thing. Now, you need networks to hone ideas and source resources. You need a snappy pitch to catch the attention of useful people and you’ll need to develop your influencing skills to draw people into collaboration.

This week, it’s all about you…

Over the past weeks, you may have found yourself developing a hunch into an idea, possibly having thought through a problem, or you may have started exploring your ‘adjacent possible’.

If so, finding yourself with a great idea is one thing, but getting that idea off the ground is another. To do this, you need to be able to pitch your ideas to others, develop your networks, and get people on board. This video explains in more detail what this week is about but, in short, we’re going to look at how to test your ideas out, develop networks, pitch ideas, and make something happen.

However, you might not have an idea or project in mind, and that’s fine too. This week is full of possibilities.

  • Perhaps you’ll work on developing your skills in influencing and pitching to different audiences, and use that in your studies, your work, in volunteering for an organisation, or just to get out there and meet people.

  • Perhaps you’ll come back to these skills at a later date, when you do have an idea you want to develop.

  • Perhaps you are the network this week, and you spot a great idea in the discussion or comments. If you think you can help that person develop with your unique skills and knowledge, why not connect to them, and see what you can make happen?

Whatever your situation, use this time to establish strong connections with people, engineer your luck, and develop your creative habits.

You never know when you might need them…

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Unleash Your Potential: Innovation and Enterprise

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