Where do Ideas come from?

Agreed, it's a big question - they don't get much bigger - but one that's rarely asked. This is rather strange when you think about it, as all but the simplest actions must begin with an idea of some kind. And this applies in business, no less than in any other situation.

Our answer isn't intended to be comprehensive, and certainly not rooted in any formal psychological analysis - just a few brief thoughts to ponder. However, they all have in common the notion of human response to something and, as is frequently the case, they could be overlapping.

Firstly, there may be a problem to solve. "We need to come up with a solution". So essentially a reaction or result of a stimulus.

Perhaps related to the above, the idea may be the outcome of analysis and experimentation. This would apply to scientific research and the development of new products addressing identified needs.

Alternatively, the research may be initiated by someone's intuition or a hunch that there's something out there that just has to be proven and demonstrated.

Finally (and this is not necessarily the end), there may also be a very creative basis for an idea. In other words, some people, e.g. architects or designers in any sphere, see possibilities in a variety of situations and then translate them into something practical.

As we say, this is not an all-embracing enquiry into the field of ideas, but hopefully it can be a basis for an interesting conversation.


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