Back in our school days we learnt to hide our answers from the kid sitting next to us. We'd put our arm over our papers and glare at any "Copy Cat" which might be trying to steal our well groomed answer. It's ours.
With our creative work we can be tempted to do the same.
My ideas. My glory. You can't see them because you might take the credit for them. Mine.
There is also the fear. Sharing an idea in it's early stages can be a risk. What if it's a silly idea. What if I've missed a clear and obvious part of the brief. What will this say about me? What if other people don't see things the way I do?
It's like the idea is actually a part of me. Idea rejected. Me rejected.
So we decide to hoard ideas. This is the easiest option. We keep them to ourselves in the dusty mansion in our minds labelled 'idea reserve'. Some of these ideas we get out, dust off and polish up. However the mansion is piled high with half baked ideas which are yet to see the light of day. Sure they'll need work but one day we'll use them. If we can find where they are. We close the door on them for now. We don't share. There they all sit. The unused ideas. In the dark. Gathering dust.
But there is another way. Another way of looking at things. A more generous and more positive way.
What if we gave away every idea that popped into our heads. What if we were known for sharing ideas. What if we kept no creative idea to ourselves?
Sharing ideas - Members of some of my brilliant team at Capital One giving their ideas away
After-all, most ideas are not completely original to us anyway. Most concepts are made up of the pieces of stories we find littered around our culture. Other people shared those pieces with us. We have simply reassembled them in a different pattern.
They are there to play with. So lets play. I'll give you a interesting but not yet finally assembled idea and you can put the final touches on it in a far better way then I would ever do. Let's share. Let's share.
We'd not be seeking personal glory because we would be about the glory of the idea. We'd not be scared of what others think of the idea because if they rejected it we have confidence we would collectively be able to adapt and mould the idea.
We'd also be in the mindset of replenishing ideas swiftly so if you don't like my idea I'd know that a new one will be along swiftly. No problem.
No longer would a dusty old mansion in our minds labelled 'idea reserve' exist. Instead a clean, modern, minimalist structure would be present labelled 'idea warehouse'. There would be nothing in any of the white washed rooms because just as soon as something was placed there it would be being shipped out to share. New idea in. New idea out.
This mindset would cause us to always be on the lookout for more and more relevant ideas. We'd be in the game of idea replenishment. To recognise great new ideas and to get them out into the world for all to see, use and change for the good of the brief.
People would want to work with us because we were always contributing. We'd be always giving. We'd be the ones people would go to first when they needed help imagining a way to their destination.
Sharing is caring. Do yourself a favour. Stop hoarding. Give your creative ideas away.