It starts with a spark of inspiration. You see a gap in the market, an unmet need, a social problem that could be addressed with thought, innovation and hard work.

Done right, it could really make a difference. Done fast, it could steal a march on potential competitors. Done in a controlled manner, and you’re in it for the long haul.

So what comes next?

Doubt, that’s what. Yes, maybe not for everyone, but for many. They may not be exactly these doubts or quite in this order, but still they come:

  • “There’s a reason why no-one has managed to do this.”
  • “I’ll never find the money to really get it going.”
  • “I don’t have all the skills to do this.
  • “I’m just not sure I have it in me.”
  • “How will I pay my bills and get this off the ground?”

The idea is still there, but it doesn’t feel quite like ‘the one’ anymore. You stop scribbling notes about it and cast your mind to other things. For some, this happens in minutes or hours. For others, days.

If your first instinct was that your idea might really have legs, then there is a good chance that you are right. Of course, this doesn’t guarantee success, not by a long way. But doing nothing definitely guarantees failure.

So, what do you do?

Tell someone.

You might be thinking, “But they’ll steal my idea!”

Find someone you trust, someone who will get your concepts, and just as importantly, somebody who can deliver honest feedback constructively.

Find a mentor and then find your way around your doubts. Refine your idea, kill your idea, but whatever you do, give it due thought and attention.

Being an entrepreneur and business owner can be lonely. A mentor provides you with that sounding board to ensure you focus your energy where it counts and you make those big decisions with a clear head.

Having a mentor also means you’re making an instant commitment – a commitment to follow your idea through and give it the thought it deserves.

As well as KPMG there are various places to find a mentor, try asking your industry association, or your local Business Growth Hub or Chamber of Commerce as good places to start.

“Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it’s the only thing that ever has,” said the cultural anthropologist Margaret Mead.

So, get out there and change the world.

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