What's the value of an idea?

What's an idea worth? Some famous entrepreneurs as well as many people say it's $0. Perhaps that's true in straight dollars and cents. But what's an idea really worth when it's something you can't stop thinking about? Something a whole lot more. Ideas help shape your thinking about the world around you. They impact your day to day life. For some people, ideas are what propels them out of bed in the morning, and keeps them up late at night.

So while it's easy to say that an idea may be worth nothing, I tend to disagree, at least in part.

Where the rubber meets the road is in fact in execution. An idea that you don't execute on - especially a brilliant idea - will eventually get produced by someone else. There are famous stories of the "idea person" behind the scenes getting nothing because they didn't participate in building the product. Or - take Snapchat - they paid their idea person (Reggie Brown) $158 million to supposedly "disappear" after he threatened them with a lawsuit over the idea. That's pretty validating for an idea when an idea is supposedly worth nothing!

Regardless of your opinion on the topic, one thing we all know is true is that execution is hard. Placing an idea in a growing market is critical. And getting something out into the wild is the best way to get started. 

if you have an idea, ask yourself a few questions:

  1. Why you?
  2. Why now?
  3. What’s the driving force behind the idea?
  4. Can it be a business?

If you can answer these with confidence then it may be time to kick the tires. Happy executing!