Back in the days when the world was new, Zeus, Neptune, and Minerva had great arguments about which god could make the most perfect object. The three decided to have a contest to see which of their creations came closest to perfection. They asked the god Momus to be the judge.
Zeus made a man; Neptune, a bull; and Minerva, a house. Momus studies the three creations.
He immediately found fault with Zeus man: “There is no window in his breast so that we can see his innermost feelings and desires.”
Next, he took issue with the bull. “Its horn are above its eyes. How can the animals see when it gores with them?” Momus said disdainfully.
Finally, Momus pointed to a flaw of the house. “It has no wheels to let the owners move away from noisy neighbors,” he asked.
Zeus became furious at the god who criticized everything, and drove him from Heaven.
Those who produce the least are the ones who criticize the most.
A few days ago, a client and friend of mine, Henry, told me about a business partnership he desired to enter. It sounded interesting and he was excited about it. I had mentored and coached Henry the previous year on how to start an educational coaching practice. He had already met all his Key Performance Indices (KPIs) we had both set when he first got started with using my 3D framework (Talent Discovery, Talent Development and Talent Distribution) and was already yearning for more clients, more money and a much bigger vision. Now one of his clients decided to open an educational resource centre for him in order to help him distribute his talents to more kids. Frankly, it looked like divine providence and that the stars had aligned to shine on him.
After a few days, Henry calls me again but this time I notice his enthusiasm was curbed and he sounded more. confused than confident. So I invited him over for a chat during the weekend. He told me about how he had confided in some of his family members about the new partnership, only to meet their disapproval.
I listened to his tale. Then asked him which of his family members were entrepreneurs. He replied, “None”. I asked him if any of them has ever entered a successful partnership before, again he replies “No one”. Then I asked him if he would seek advice on how to repair his car from the best neurosurgeon in the world? Again he replies “No”.
The point here is quite simple. Seek advice and counsel from those who have done whatever it is you intend to do. Protect your business idea from these type of people that would criticize it before ever giving it a chance to see the light of day.
Walt Disney proposed a formula for his cartoons and movie production which I think everyone should follow when developing an idea.
First have a team of dreamers or creatives come up with a compelling storyline or idea.
Secondly have a team of producers draw up the cartoons, enlist the characters and make soundtracks to give life to the idea.
Lastly show the film to a select number of critics in order to fine tune on the idea and fix any last-minute errors before airing in cinemas to the general public.
In the same way, you must protect your idea from the critics at least up on till the time you’ve given it a chance to be developed. That way no matter their criticisms, you don’t get disheartened and pull the plug on the entire idea. Instead you take in their feedback and adjust where you deem neccesary.
It’s easy to walk away from an idea that you haven’t invested in yet. It’s like aborting a baby. But to walk away from one that you’ve invested time and energy in developing? That’s like abandoning a baby. It’s just cold-hearted and so very few ever do this. This gives the baby a chance to live, grow and succeed. Creators make babies. Critics complain that the bellies of pregnant women is too potruded for just one baby girl. It would be better if it were triplets.
Stop relying on beer parlour knowledge or emotional counsel from those with little or no insight, track record or previous successes. Your business ideas are unborn babies- protect them!