in Entrepreneurship, Leadership, Small Business

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 are 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 like-minded 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 offer rarely give an outlet for personal expression and creativity. We buy more things than we need, but many 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 build 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?