Feasibility Demands Honesty

May 6th, 2008 | Categories: design, launch, marketing, off topic, social media, strategy, web issues

When developing an idea into a full-blown business model, there is a fine line between optimism and irrational exuberance. It is important to embrace positive energy, but also maintain a level focus. Too often, start-ups acquire tunnel vision and fail to see the big picture. This clouded judgment can bring about catastrophic consequences.

How many times have you heard about the next big social bookmarking network with tagging and widget capabilities? Cutting-edge web apps are the future, but their emergence into the mainstream is unlikely at best. Moreover, the ability to monetize these services is even less likely, as education and awareness are needed before a revenue model can be established.

This theory is even more evident within the corporate culture, where the idea becomes gospel. Employees live and breathe the model. I wouldn’t go as far as using the term “brainwashing” as it is pertains to changing attitudes with ulterior motives. In this case, it is more a matter of “drinking the company Kool-Aid”.

For this reason, it is extremely important to seek outside advice, especially when faced with critical company decisions and potential strategy changes. Leveraging a board of advisors and/or consultants is a great way to get an external view of the internal situation. Market research is also a great way to confirm or disprove company findings. However, it can dangerous if the company is simply fishing for data to validate their strategy.

In the end, feasibility demands honesty. If an idea is so far-fetched that it takes 30 minutes worth of explaining to an average person, it’s not going to fly. If such is the case, the company needs to quickly change paths or reassess its very existence. Denial is a very dangerous thing. The ability to not only accept reality, but act on it, is admirable and less costly.

Leave a Comment