Everyone hates a naysayer. You know the guy that no matter what unique, amazing, idea is presented finds 10 reasons it won’t work before you say “thank you, any questions?”
They don’t even have to think about it. The business roadblocks and barriers just fly up down that road you are taking them.
We don’t want to hear about roadblocks, barriers, why nots! We want the encouragement…
“We could patent this.”
“After we master it we can turn it into a franchise.”
Then the creative warrior decides they aren’t going to let a few naysayers keep them down.
They slay the naysayer!!
And off they run down the road of creation. That is….until they run into that first roadblock. Oops! Didn’t someone mention that….
….the cost of steel was going up.
….we would need to recruit 400 new employees.
….the bank would require collateral.
“Now what do we do?”
Does that mean we should listen to the naysayers?
If we did that, we would never try anything new.
Make the Barriers Part of the Process
On the contrary! What I have learned in both business and life is that a part of assessing any direction, decision, new project, product or idea is to consider all of the roadblocks and barriers. As a matter of fact, it is not only important, but must be done in a certain order.
- Problem or Opportunity comes up-A new problem arises for a small sales distributing company. They have the opportunity to get an exclusive contract with an innovative cutting edge equipment provider, however, they must purchase the product to resell. In the past they have always sold used equipment. This will give them an incredible sales opportunity.
- Brainstorm ideas – don’t allow any filters at this stage. We want ideas on how to make it happen. Where can we sell this new equipment? How can we hit the quota to keep exclusivity? Get excited, and yes, out of the box.
- Embrace and Analyze barriers – now that you have some solid ideas to take advantage of the opportunity, now is the time to understand the barriers. The biggest barrier is they don’t just get a pass through commission. This would be great except that most of this equipment costs $200,000.00-$300,000.00 per item. We don’t have that kind of cash flow? This isn’t a barrier you want to ignore. If you do, you sell one piece of equipment and can’t deliver because you can’t purchase the item for resale.
- Look for solutions – we need to consider both the opportunities and challenges when we are putting together our plans. Part of the action steps need to include how to solve the cash flow problem. It may be to get a line of credit secured by specific account receivable contracts. Or to have a hefty downpayment policy for purchases of new equipment. Whatever the solution, plan for it just like you would the positive and exciting part of the project.
Too many new ideas/projects fail because of unforeseen barriers. Whether the barriers were never thought of or ignored because of the reputation of the naysayer, obstacles are real and almost always present.
If you want to see your idea get off the ground then go ahead and point out the barriers to begin with. Make it part of your assessment process. This will surely shut up even the naysayer when you show them your plan to knock down or get around that inevitable roadblock.