Looking for Your Next Big Idea? Ask Your Customers — and Really Listen

Looking for Your Next Big Idea? Ask Your Customers — and Really Listen

PHOTO:
Sticker Mule

Silicon Valley can at times seem like an idea factory, a Wonka Chocolate wonderland for inventing the future and disrupting the status quo. Belief in that idea has launched a thousand startups.

So what if only a few reach the farther shore? That’s normal: new ventures and pursuit of the next big idea are a high-risk proposition. The next big idea rarely emerges fully formed.

Why do some innovators launch product after product that succeeds? Maybe it’s vision or genius. But much of that genius reflects a deep understanding and empathy for what motivates potential customers. Even when an idea arrives like a bolt from the…

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