Monday, January 18, 2021

There’s No Such Thing as a Monopoly on Good Ideas

Self-doubt. It’s a disruptive way of thinking that consumes us all at some point during our careers. We’ve touched on imposter syndrome, and having a healthy relationship with your career before, but because it’s such a prominent issue, it’s worth bringing up again.

Michael Hartmann, who has more than 20 years of experience in various industries, stopped by the Real Marketers podcast to help listeners combat these negative thoughts with one simple idea – there is no such thing as a monopoly on good ideas.

Everyone Has Something to Add

I think I speak for most of us when I say our goal in life is to live without regrets. No one wants to look back and think to themselves, “I wish I had been more adventurous,” or “I wish I had spoken my mind more.” Living with regret is no way to go through life or your career.

I want to challenge you to speak up during brainstorming meetings. 2021 is the year we say goodbye to the thought, “What if it’s a stupid idea?” I’m not saying every idea will be a winner. But you’ll never know if you don’t voice your ideas. You have something worthwhile to say, no matter how much experience you have, no matter if you’re a recent college graduate, or you have 20+ years of experience.

Diversity of Thought

We couldn’t talk about idea generation without mentioning diversity of thought. Let’s walk through a hypothetical scenario. Say there was a group of people who were all from the same backgrounds, personality, and interests. They are tasked with selecting a place for lunch. Do you think anyone will express a desire to try a new place? Or will they all want to eat at their usual place? I’m willing to bet they choose the latter.

It’s crucial to have people with different backgrounds and different points of view to share their thoughts and opinions, especially in marketing. How will your brand continue to innovate if there aren’t people bringing fresh ideas to the table? Having a team with varied experiences is invaluable.

Encouraging Others

Things are easier said than done, right? How do you make a conscious effort to speak up and encourage others to voice their feedback? If you are in a leadership position, part of your job is to teach people on your team. Is it faster for you to do something? Maybe. But if you want people to be confident to bring their ideas to the table, you have to show them you believe they can do it.

And for those not in leadership positions, raise your hands. Don’t be afraid to roll up your sleeves and work hard. If you’re doing a good job, they don’t tell you to stop (sound familiar?). They’ll encourage you to keep going and give you more responsibility.

Want more tips on finding your voice? Listen to the full Real Marketers episode where Michael discusses tips he has for leaders, the benefit of making mistakes, and the impact of being a firstborn child can have on your career.