Here’s how you Turn a Small Idea into a Big Business

The power of small ideasThe rapid pace of technological advancements means, among other things, that there are opportunities in industries that didn’t even exist 20 or even 10 years ago.

This theme of utilising the power of tech to create new opportunities in emerging industries is one that has been explored by Dave Duarte, a South African “edupreneur“.

Duarte is founder and CEO of Treeshake, which provides a range of learning solutions for companies and entrepreneurs and empowers them to respond to the lastest tech opportunities and trends.

Duarte is a globally recognised expert in social business and a pioneer in the field of digital leadership, and was also named the Young Global Leader by the World Economic Forum.

Side projects are the new CV

Last month Duarte in his presentation, ‘The Power of Small Ideas: In Praise of the Side Project’ at the TED Talk World Design Capital in Cape Town, looked at how engaging in small side projects in this digital age can lead to the creation of new businesses.

Here are his 5 tips for nurturing side projects to become big business ideas:

1. Side projects might be the answer

Duarte says a side project is anything you’re curious about, or a problem you want to solve. As you engage in side projects, you build the skills you didn’t have before. Side projects are the new CV.

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2. Big ideas are just small ideas with momentum

Commit time into doing a small part of your single project a day. Duarte says try to think of your project as a marathon.

3. No excuses

It doesn’t matter if your idea is already being done by someone else, says Duarte. Don’t focus on all the reason why something won’t work, focus on the one reason why it will.

4. There is no failure in side projects

Duarte says it’s important to view side projects as experiments, and you always learn something from an experiment.

5. Move with the times

People, he says, must ensure that they are on the right side of progress. Don’t get left behind.

This article was originally published in September 2014.
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