CM Leaders: Acting on Ideas

Creativity / Trends //

Good Idea. Now What?

Ideas are impotent without action

The greatest  collection of treasures are in the local cemetery, not fort knox or museums.

Why? because all of us have great ideas inside of us, but many of us will takes those to the grave with us.

What follows are some principles to make ideas work—

Ideas start with the culture the idea is incubated. If implementation of ideas is important, it needs to be a discussion point with top level leadership. If implementation is only important to you and no one else around you, chances are you will not succeed with putting action to your idea/vision.

 Taking Action on your Ideas


There is often lots of conversation about the vision, and the growth and value, but there is often not much focus on culture and innovation.  People will stay because of the culture. If there is a lot of turnover in people, there is probably a problem with the culture. The best ideas in the wrong culture will go nowhere.

Divergemove, lie, or extend in different directions from a common point; branch off.

You know something—-in response to that you do something

Traditional thinking says you can move forward as long as someone else has already done it, so you have something to compare your success. There is a certain safety in doing the same things that someone has already done. The problem is, if you do something the same way someone else has done, you will probably get the same results. Chances are, you want different results, so the better course of action would be to diverge.

A better way to think would be:

You know something—–diverge—-then do something

How can you diverge?

  • Bring some outsiders into the idea circle
  • actionable process: when you work on an idea, it takes you away from your other ideas. and you pull away from other things and other people. Those people who were once close to you and encouraged you will begin to criticize the ideas you are working on. It is not because they don’t agree with your ideas. It has more to do with their frustration with your new allocation of time, since you are spending so much time on your new idea.
  • understand the idea you start with is not the idea you end with
  • You can define your own success

it is better to launch at 70% complete then to achieve 95% and never launch. When you have an idea, it is necessary to act. There comes a point when you need to stop talking and thinking, and act.


Ideas start with a vision and leads to a solution. The next step is to assess your idea and solution. It is then necessary to celebrate the things you have done right. You can then share with others, and the process will start all over again. This is a great way to continually make your ideas better.

Figure out when and how you are most productive so you can make the most of your time.

People process better when they can think about something on their own before discussing it as a group. Send out ideas and discussion points/questions ahead of time so you can make better use of the time you have when you get together. Not only is this

When it comes to your ideas—What is most important to you? When you figure that out, then you need to invest in that every day.

You will make time for what you think is valuable

Charles is the CEO & Chief Idea-Maker at Ideation, an idea agency that specializes in helping businesses & organizations create & implement remarkable ideas via creative business design, organizational innovation, branding, design, marketing, social media, and divergent problem-solving. He is also the author of Good Idea. Now What?: How to Move Ideas to Execution, a practical book designed to help people move ideas to implementation. In addition, Charles is the creator of grassroots efforts including Ideation Conference, the Idea Camp, and the Freeze Project as well as the co-founder of JustOne. Charles regularly speaks on topics such as creativity, innovation, idea-making, branding, collaboration, new media, and social entrepreneurism.





About the Author

I am a dad to the best little girl you could imagine. Married to the best woman you could imagine (and probably the only one who could put up with me). She is definitely the better half. I am a children’s pastor at a church about 30 minutes outside of Detroit. I was a teacher for over 5 years. I can speak Spanish and I’ve been out of the country 9 different times to 5 different countries doing mission work with kids. I wrote a family devotion book.  You can see it at