Being in the early-stage space means that you’re constantly talking about ideas. The idea might be a new feature for an existing product. Or, it could be a pie-in-the-sky idea for a yet-to-be-formed company.
Talking ideas is fun. But sometimes you run into an “Idea Hater.” You know, the person that says one (or all) of following things, repeatedly:
Are these folks wrong to ask such questions? Hell no! It is vital to understanding the competitive landscape, technical feasibility and strategy for establishing a moat. But what defines an Idea Hater is someone that regardless of the answers still believes the product or company cannot be created, let alone successful. Idea Haters do not believe another great company can be built.
But all around us, crazy ideas are being turned into great companies. Here are two of my favorites. So the next time you run into a Hater, share these ideas as a reminder that innovation is alive and well.
Airbags for bicyclists
The pitch: “What about using airbag-like technology to create a more comfortable bike helmet. Think about it. It is inflatable airbag that cyclists wear around their necks, like a scarf. It’s light, stylish and unencumbering. In the event of an accident the airbag inflates and protects the rider's head.”
This crazy idea is brought you by Hovding.
A Smart Saw
The pitch: “You know how the iPhone doesn’t work if the person is wearing gloves. It’s like the iPhone knows the difference between flesh and other materials. Well, what about a saw that detects the difference between wood and flesh. And if it detects flesh, it immediately stops the saw and saves the craftsman finger, hand or arm.”
This idea by SawStop actually works. It's the reason my father-in-law still has all ten of his fingers.
I'm the Founder and CEO of Peak Support. This blog is my take on early-stage companies and innovation. Every so often, there may be a post about culture, networking, family -- you name it. After all, what is a blog if it isn't a tad bit unstructured.