BOLD Ideas Bring You BOLD Success
1 January 2018
BOLD ideas bring you to the top. I think all of you out there have some sense of how to be a bold entrepreneur. Even if you don’t know how to be an entrepreneur, I know you have some sense of how to be bold.
You’re most likely on this page now if you are an entrepreneur or want to be, but even if you aren’t, you’re still welcome to read on, since ‘BOLD’ is not just about entrepreneurs, but also about using technology, having the right mindset, and using crowdsourcing, crowdfunding and communities to change the world.
Just a short tidbit about how I came upon ‘BOLD’. It was when I was back in the US visiting my hometown, Portland, Oregon, for my summer holiday away from my day job. I had already bought a few books at Powell’s Bookstore along with two books from back home in Surabaya, Indonesia. I walked into a Dollar Tree for some cheap goodies to bring back home with me when I unexpectedly ran into the book section I never realized existed at Dollar Tree. ALL of the books were various fiction, action, and sci-fi books. Except for ONE business book. ‘BOLD’. Of course, I bought it. I had to. It was only $1!
“The world’s biggest problems equal the biggest business opportunities.”
Never before the information age were the world’s problems able to be solved in the extremely short amounts of time we are able to accomplish today. All of these mind-bending feats have been done with the help of extraordinary technology, or as the book calls it, exponential technology. That’s what the first part of ‘Bold’ gets into.
The authors developed ‘The Six Ds’ which they go into brief detail explaining each progressive step which are as follows: Digitalization, Deception, Disruption, Demonetization, Dematerialization, and Democratization. It sounds confusing and it was a little when I first got into reading it, but after a little bit of study into it, it became clearer. You should be able to understand the concept of ‘The Six Ds’ a bit better with the help of this infographic provided by Singularity University.
The authors then go on to give the readers five solid examples of technologies; networks and sensors, infinite computing, AI, robotics, and synthetic biology, that are somewhere in the disruptive stage of the ‘Six Ds’ and how these disruptive technologies will change our world in the very near future.
Powerful Lesson #1: You must be aware of all the upcoming technologies, especially if you’re involved in business. Don’t just be aware of it, but use it to your advantage and if you can, and you have the resources, then you need to create your own exponential technology so that you can get ahead of the game and not be left behind.
“Fail early, fail often, fail forward.”
Part two of ‘BOLD’ is about shooting for the 10x rule and how to go about achieving your goal with the right mindset and atmosphere by experimenting continuously to bring you beyond success while using real-life examples from Google and Elon Musk just to name two. There are also several wonderful suggestions on how to put yourself in the right mindset, or what the authors call ‘flow’, to reach the 10x goal.
The examples given from real life people that have already succeeded in their life are great, especially from my hero, Elon Musk. Although I already read Elon Musk‘s biography (my review) which is filled with everything you would ever want to know about Elon Musk’s life and business, it was still nice to see how he applies the 10X rule in his businesses and risks everything that he does knowing that the outcome will likely be amazing.
Richard Branson, on the other hand, takes a little different approach to reaching his 10x. He still risks almost everything but he has always had a plan B in case something goes wrong.
Whichever route you take, the lessons about how these well known bold entrepreneurs use moonshot thinking are priceless. I recommend taking the time to read about these leaders in other books or online sources since the information in ‘BOLD’ barely touches on the lives of these world-changing entrepreneurs.
In case you don’t know much about how the 10x rule works, here’s a short video from Between The Lines explaining it.
Powerful Lesson #2: When you’ve got an idea or goal you want to accomplish you must shoot for the highest possible result even if it is risky. Put your full mind to the task at hand. Failure is okay, in fact essential, but to give up is not.
The Bold Crowd
“First, find something you feel deeply passionate about creating. Second, choose something the crowd is passionate about seeing come into existence.”
This last section is all about the crowd. We’ve got crowdsourcing, crowdfunding, communities and how to build them, and incentive competitions.
Basically, the book tells you what crowdsourcing is and how wonderful it is. Also how you can use it. Using an example such as how you can get your work done for half the cost and half the time it might normally take working directly face-to-face with someone. You could even be working with someone on the other side of the globe as if he/she were right next to you.
I personally find crowdsourcing useful for people that are just beginning their entrepreneurial career especially if your network is not that big. You’ve got a whole workforce out there at the tip of your fingertips. All you’ve got to do is just find the right match and get started.
Whole businesses are actually built on crowdsourcing. That’s how powerful it is.
You can do everything from home, or in a coffee shop without having to go to the office every morning. With crowdsourcing, running your small business becomes much easier.
The crowdsourcing sites mentioned in ‘BOLD’ are as follows in case you’re interested in following through with some crowdsourcing of your own:
Freelancer – Free for all, any type of job you can think of.
Tongal – TV commercials at one one-hundredth the price.
Mechanical Turk – Various
Fiverr – Anything to do with art or design.
99Designs – Same as Fiverr but more focused on business designs.
Top Coder – Coder heaven hacking away at software and algorithm development.
Kaggle – Same as Top Coder.
UTest – It’s a community of professional testers who test everything from functionality to your code.
Reverb Nation – The free way of sharing your music to test it before you spend money publishing.
Powerful Lesson #3: You can get almost any job done at half the cost or less through crowdsourcing. If you don’t have that big of a network, crowdsourcing has the reach of hundreds of thousands of able people that can give you quality work.
Money, money, money. Isn’t money something that causes us pleasure, but most of the time, stress? Just like individuals, having enough money is a source of stress for businesses too. Most companies and individuals say that coming up with the money for a new project is one of the most difficult tasks we can take on. Money is one of the top reasons why people stop before their bold ideas even take off. With crowdfunding at hand, your goals to create the next world-changing product or service is possible even if you personally don’t have the capital.
There are four types of crowdfunding ‘BOLD’ discusses.
Donation – This is just like the traditional donation except for online.
Debt – This is where you ask a loan from the crowd and pay it back with interest.
Equity – If you’ve got a company already you can use this style of funding by selling equity in your company for cash in exchange for stock in your company.
Reward or Incentive – In exchange for sending money to the receiver, the funder receives a reward like a t-shirt, or a copy of the actual product or service they’re funding. The higher amount sent, the bigger the reward.
The type of funding ‘BOLD’ focuses on fully is Reward or Incentive funding where the authors give you two successful case studies and one almost successful one to inspire you and show you that funding does really work. The first case study is about The Pebble Watch.
Second, about Let’s Build a Goddamn Tesla Museum YOU NEED TO CHECK THAT LINK OUT! It’s hilarious!
And case study three is about the author’s own crowdfunding venture called The ARKYD Space Telescope which unfortunately failed, but on the bright side will still be launching 100 telescopes by 2019, just no ‘Space Selfies’ as was originally planned.
The book goes on to discuss some useful tips on who should start a crowdfunding campaeign and how to run one. Mentioning things such as how long you should run your campaign to what your target should be, all the way to building the right team to help you spread your meaningful story.
Powerful Lesson #4: If you’ve got a bold idea or product that you feel passionate about and know that it will make a big difference in changing our world. You also know that other people will feel the same way about it as you do, but you don’t have the funds to create it, then you have an option. Create a plan to promote your idea through crowdfunding. If your idea is inspiring enough, then you will be able to get it funded.
‘People get involved in communities, not because of the money or the sponsors or the fact that they can get jobs as a result. The get involved because it’s social. We give our community a place to go to get together because they want to get together. That’s why communities work.’ This whole chapter is quite amazing giving tips and morals about why communities exist and how great communities are created.
Actual communities are able to develop an understanding together through deep engagement. Likes and re-Tweets on Facebook and Twitter are just for cosmetics. The true communication comes when a bridge is built between people around the world to come together and have a meaningful conversation with each other about a specific niched topic.
‘BOLD’ talks about communities as living entities coming together to create something that they truly have a passion for, working together, and sharing all their ideas into one pool.
It’s better to have 1 hour of 100 committed members of your community that to have 50,000 inactive users. ‘BOLD’ gives you several tips on how to build and manage a successful community which could potentially turn into a successful business.
Powerful Lesson #5: ‘Engagement isn’t a like on Facebook. A like is just one-way communication. It doesn’t go anywhere. You have to think about what a community actually is. It’s people talking to one another. Engagement is always about getting that conversation going and keeping it going.’
People are naturally competitive especially when you give them something that has a high empathetic connotation. The best incentive prizes are those that solve important puzzles for all of humanity.
This chapter starts with the history of incentive competitions which dates back to 1714 when the British Parliament offered 20,000 pounds to the first person/team to accurately measure longitude at sea. Another example was in 1795 when Napoleon offered 12,000-franc for the first person/team to create a method for preserving food to feed his faraway army marching off to war in Russia. This method is still used in food preservatives today.
‘BOLD’ goes on to give a few more modern examples of incentive competitions such as the Wendy Schmidt Oil Cleanup XCHALLENGE which happened in 2010, the disaster (not the cleanup) is now a major motion picture called ‘Deepwater Horizon’. In 2006, The Netflix Prize was yet another example of incentive competitions when Netflix offered $1 million for whoever could write an algorithm that improved their existing system by 10 percent.
At the very end of this information-packed book, it explains how you can go about creating your guidelines in making a successful competition so that your participants can fully understand what your goals are and what the outcome should be. Your participants will no doubt create outstanding results.
Powerful Lesson #6: When creating an open competition with enticing incentives, you never know where your talent will come from. The results will most likely be far above your original expectations. A key lesson here is that you should never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world.
When you’re looking for a needle in a haystack, incentive competitions help the needle come to you.
Final Thoughts on ‘BOLD’
‘BOLD’ does have several powerful lessons, each section connecting loosely to the next. Although the ‘Bold Technology’, ‘Bold Mindset’, and ‘The Bold Crowd’ sections of the book bring up some essential important tools for entrepreneurs in the information age, I feel like it only touches the tip of the iceberg on these topics. Maybe that is what the authors’ goal was in the first place only to write an introduction to these topics, but it would have been much more efficient to write one whole book on each section or follow ‘BOLD’ up with a book for each topic.
But since there is not a second, third, or fourth book to ‘BOLD’, I highly recommend digging deeper into any of the topics that interest you in this book.
By taking the time to share this powerful and bold information with your friends, you’ll be helping this world come one step closer to understanding. Do all of us a favor and share.
Always remember to share what you’ve learned with the people you care most about.