Look for the Small Opportunities in the Big, Enormous Ideas

Over the years, I have seen many an entrepreneur become fixated on the "Next Big Thing". Instead of mastering the enormous opportunity, the project eats up all their resources or it gets kicked into the wastebin of abandoned projects, never to be seen again. Actually, that describes several of my projects that helped build experience for the occasional successes.

But as we know, experience is a very, very harsh and expensive thing. We didn't pursue the Next Big Thing because it was a terrible idea, and we didn't abandon it because it couldn't take off. Most of the time we just didn't understand what was needed, and we probably didn't have the backing to completely make the trek from idea to success.

So instead of experiencing a failure and abandoning the opportunity, we might do better to recognize the smaller opportunities in the Next Big Thing. Just break the big idea down to its key components. Some of those smaller projects could be very successful without squandering the enormous resources the Next Big Thing demands. If you keep the bigger opportunity in mind, you might even be able to piece together an incredible idea out of successful smaller projects. You could go beyond synergies to exponential returns.

There was a similar situation many years ago at the beginning of the PC revolution in 1982. The Amiga Corporation was formed to create a new video gaming console. The founders knew they needed secrecy and more resources for development, so they started out selling gaming controllers. Their small and brilliant development staff succeeded in creating the most advanced PC of its time, the Amiga. The company was sold to Commodore and in 1985 the machine went to market, eventually selling over 6 million units.

The people involved in the Amiga Corporation knew they had to do smaller projects to accomplish their Next Big Thing. In the end, their machine became a historic part of the PC revolution. Maybe that isn't your ambition, but when (not if) you feel your project is too much to handle, try breaking it down to smaller pieces to carry you through. It may succeed beyond your wildest dreams.

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