Well this is getting a little repetitive, but it's always nice to add another voice to the (growing) crowd of people, who recognize that execution
is much more important than the idea. We've discussed
this many times and have pointed out people, such as Scott Adams
, who have made similar points. The latest such example comes to us courtesy of the Capitalist Lion Tamer
, who highlights a brief excerpt from Maxim and The Week creator Felix Dennis' new book, in which he makes the identical point about ideas and execution
. He notes that an idea is not enough. It may be important, but ideas are more "like Nike sports shoes," in that they can be a tool that can be used by someone to accomplish great things, but in the end it's the actual execution that matters:
I have lost count of the number of men and women who have approached me with their “great idea,” as if this, in and of itself, was their passport to instant wealth. The idea is not a passport. At most, it is the means of obtaining one. In some instances, a fixation on a great idea can prove hazardous, distracting your attention from the perils and pitfalls
you will inevitably encounter on the narrow road.
If you never have a single great idea in your life, but become skilled in executing the great ideas of others, you can succeed beyond your wildest dreams. They do not have to be your ideas — execution is all. When confronted with a great idea, your reaction should be to scrupulously analyze its commercial potential in the context of your own ability to transform that potential into triumph.
Ideas don’t make you rich. The correct execution of ideas does.
Doesn't it seem odd that so many people (and very, very successful people at that) recognize this basic concept... and yet our entire public policy around innovation focuses solely on rewarding the idea, at the expense of the execution?