The end of One Young World 2015 is here. Many of us are making plans about the next steps – about finding the cause we care for and making a difference. Inspired by 3 books I read this year , I wanted to share a couple of lessons that might help moving from thought to action. .
Take a first step ASAP
We have an idea. The next step is planning and flushing out the idea- white boards, getting feedback and market surveys. Right? No. The recommendation is to skip all the intellectual masturbation and get straight to action. Don’t think too far – just start! Maybe take 30 mins to do something about your idea. Try your product on someone you meet ( even if they are not the ideal user). As Prof Yunus said, find the first user (or customer) , whack together a very basic product(minimum viable product) and get cracking!
Keep gathering momentum – bite sized improvements
If your MVP works, we tend to go back to the drawing board. You want to foresee the future of your product and plan towards it. But plans work only in a stable world – our world changes very quickly. Change your mindset from planning the entire product to creating iterations of a fully functioning product- keep adding features or making improvements. This gives great momentum and energy. This is particularly useful if you work on some ideas as a “side job” – lack of momentum kills many ideas. Remember your ideas won’t save lives – only the implementation will. So keep pushing out versions of your product. Keep learning and improving.
Fail fast, learn faster
To allow the iterative development process to work, you need a major change in mindset. You need to learn to fail and fail fast. Accept that you are going to screw up and just screw up quickly. You can’t be an adult without being a baby. Treat each iteration of your product as a lesson and fix one thing at a time. Over time the failures will reduce and the successes increase. But please fail fast and learn quicker.
I am learning as we go, slowly moving from thought to action. Hopefully these tips will help you too. Do leave a comment about the small steps you are taking – am certain it’ll inspire all of us.
Have a go, you never know what happens…
P.S. This post was in response to a fellow delegate’s question. Conversation was turned into this post. If you have questions or feedback, I’d love to hear and improve this post.