Give away your best ideas…

…and in return, get something much more valuable. Our world is continually more connected physically and electronically. Yet that isn’t all we need; we also crave an authentic human connection.

On Friday, I listened to a thought provoking Pat Flynn podcast about the Entrepreneurial Mindset, and I am reading Seth Godin’s book, The Icarus Deception. The book and the podcast share a similar theme: that creating worthwhile work requires vulnerability, openness, and human connection.

Philadelphia streets
City streets connect us physically, but personal connection is scarce.

Adopting an open, generous attitude may require us to reconsider some of our long-standing assumptions. If we believe that business opportunities and good ideas are scarce, we will be reluctant to share our best ideas freely. However, if the best ideas are simply iterations on already proven concepts, they are abundant – not scarce. In that case, we should share our best ideas freely to gain something even more valuable: trusting and open relationships with likeminded professionals.

As Seth points out in his book, this generation is experiencing a growing dissatisfaction with material wealth. Corporations continually push towards standardization and efficiency, and the jobs they provide rarely provide an outlet for individual expression and creativity. We buy more things than we need, but an abundance of physical artifacts does not bring lasting satisfaction. As a result, many of those entering the workplace are seeking to find connections through meaningful work and relationships based on shared purpose.

Here is what I want you to consider: I think that the business of the future will be built on authentic human connections made by generosity, creativity, and shared ideas. Shared ideas bring us together. In his book, The Four Loves, C.S. Lewis says, “Friendship … is born at the moment when one man says to another, ‘What! You too? I thought that no one but myself…'” If you want to build a team that will create value, sharing your best ideas freely is well worth the cost of creating lasting connections. With a connected team and a shared vision, nothing will stop you from iterating on ideas, improving them, and testing them in the real world.

Do you find it easy to share your ideas? Do you agree that this might create trust and long-lasting relationships that could be of great value to your business?

  • Mike Bayes

    Really great thought process. We have been practicing a form of it in our sales efforts. We make a list of people we know, and then figure out what we can do to help them. Works every time. Thanks for the post!

    • http://harveyramer.com/ Harvey A. Ramer

      Mike, thanks for the comment and the voicemail! I think it’s great that you are using generosity in your sales process. How do you identify ways to help your prospective customers?

      It would be interesting to hear from a large number of business owners regarding the role they feel generosity plays in their business success.