Socially compliant idea-cemetery


Ideas are worth nothing, execution is king.

Voila, the startup mantra. Sounds logically, especially because execution requires way more energy and resources than simply thinking and writing down ideas. Some might argue that training your mind to create original ideas requires quality time and inputs, yet the execution argument wins.

Despite the proclaimed value we don’t have a perfectly working system for executing truly great ideas. Switching into the execution gear often depends on a chain of subjective decisions and the social and economic context at the time when an idea is analyzed. Every year, people burry millions of ideas, usually based on poor review criteria, giving up way before the first experiment. There are dozens of books on decision making, but ultimately it’s all about what we stand to lose (sacrifice) and what we stand to gain by pursuing a new endeavor.

One specific form of sacrifice inspired me to write this note - social compliance.

It would be an easy exercise if it was about our own gain or lost value, or if we we could generate a 100% rational value chart for every new idea, using an excel spreadsheet, but we can’t. Not everything that can be measured is worthy, and what is worthy can’t be always measured, hence the rational path to pitching and working on an idea doesn’t cut through. Sometimes we are asked to give up by the very people we love.

The more socially connected we get, the more we risk by pursuing new daring ideas.

The idea-cemetery gets bigger.