No Guarantees

No Guarantees

Risk management

I wish every one of my ideas were a guaranteed winner. They aren’t, and I won’t have any either. You can’t manufacture a guarantee. There’s always a risk.

When someone says, they are “all out of good ideas,” what I hear is, “I’m all out of ideas that I can’t defend.” These are ideas that were not good enough to push. Not good enough to face the fear that it’s a bad idea.

Here’s the thing… ideas are everywhere. You take a touch of Flash Gordon, a piece of The Dambusters, mix in some Joseph Campbell, and you get the first Star Wars. Taking bits and pieces of things and molding them into something new is the crux of all creation. That’s the easy part.

I bet everyone has mashed up a couple of ideas into something good. For a while the easiest logline in Hollywood was “It’s Die Hard but on a plane/boat/bus/etc.” This type of pitching isn’t particularly hard.

If you try… even a lazy mash-up on an idea can be turned into a good idea that can then be turned into a great idea. No guarantees, of course. However, wouldn’t it be nice to take that great idea and then turn it into something unique? It’s a risk. gamble.

It also means hard work. Persistence. Focus.

Can you take a pretty good idea and turn it into a great idea? Can you do the work necessary to make it? Can you defy the odds? Can you ignore the lack of guaranteed success and see where this idea may take you?

I ponder those questions all the time.