Tuesday, September 25, 2012

The $120,000 Brainstorming Technique

The other day, I got an idea worth at least $100,000.

Want to know what it is?

I can't tell you.

What the idea is, I mean. Because it's so lucrative and easy to do that my competitors would copy it before 5:00 today.

But ... though I can't tell you WHAT the six-figure idea is, I'm happy to tell you HOW I got it.

Who knows? It might be worth six figures to you, too.

Still want to know what it is?

It's this: The next time you get stuck trying to solve a problem, pick up a pen.

Here's the story ...

Last Thursday morning, I was sitting in the lobby at Victory Auto in Chanhassen, waiting for my car to get a tuneup. (Victory Auto does AWESOME work at great prices, by the way -- free plug for those guys :-)

Anyway, I had been brainstorming on my laptop for solutions to a vexing problem. For more than 30 minutes, I was pounding away at the keyboard. Idea after idea came flowing out ... all of them crappy.

Eric, the manager, walked up and said that my car was done. So I closed up my laptop and got ready to leave.

Two minutes later, Eric came back to apologize -- my car would take another 15 minutes to fix.

"No problem," I said. "I can still do my work."

Not wanting to fire up the laptop again, I grabbed a scratch pad of paper, like the one in the picture above.

I started brainstorming solutions to the same problem, but this time on paper --  doodling, scribbling, and jotting down ideas with a pen.

In 15 minutes, I had sketched out a new business unit worth about $120,000 a year. That was Thursday.

I opened that business unit on Friday morning and had my first conversation with a prospect on Friday afternoon.

The first order came in on Monday.

So, yeah, it's a pretty good idea. That's why the picture above is not of the actual doodle sheet with the actual idea. (It's now in a safe deposit box in my closet.)

But you can have the process behind that six-figure idea free and clear. The process is this: To get different ideas, move different muscles.

If you keep using the same muscles to think -- your fingers tapping the same way on the same keyboard -- you may keep getting the same ideas.

Instead, grab a pen and paper, and move different muscles -- by writing out your ideas longhand. You know, like back in grade school, when everybody told you how creative you were. You still are creative, but life in a cubicle or chained to a desk may have caused some of those creative muscles to atrophy.

Get away from the desk. Grab a pen and paper. Move different muscles. Get different ideas.

Meanwhile ... if you want to put an end to "feast-or-famine" syndrome in your business, grab your free Client Cloning Kit here.  

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