I have been developing products for years and years- it is, very sincerely, my life. And I couldn’t have endured the rollercoaster ride that has consequently defined it without genuinely loving what I do. It’s my motivation to wake in the morning, and the last thing I think about before my head hits the pillow. Obnoxiously cliché, but true. I’ve even created a program from my varied personal experiences that helps other inventors bring their products to market. So… I like to think I know a thing or two about the process involved, seeing as how I’ve stumbled, tripped, and occasionally enjoyed some smooth sailing down the path to success over the last twenty-five years.
I recently decided to take on a new adventure (and really, anyone who has ever run their own company can attest to the fact that it is constantly an adventure). I wanted to gain national exposure – I wanted the glory – to hear, “lights, camera, action!” I wanted my fifteen minutes. I love and use the clip of a feature with a local station – frankly, they make me look better than I can. But I wanted something bigger. I wanted prime-time programming.
I wanted to get on “The Big Idea” with Donny Deutsch.
At first I was a little skeptical of the program, a little hesitant. But after watching it for a couple weeks, I noticed how it really inspired people – it got them talking and thinking about their own ideas. Hell, I’ve been in the business for a lifetime, and it inspired me!
I threw myself into working to get on “The Big Idea”– organizing support, doing research, cultivating an angle. I had done all this work when something became blaringly obvious: I hadn’t taken my own advice. As I stated earlier, I help other inventors, offering them guidance and personal recommendations through my program InventRight. I always talk about a first, fundamental step: gaining a full and intimate understanding your customer and their needs.
I didn’t have one. My dedicated work thus far was actually a fat waste of time – worthless. I had been working so hard to sell DD on my program, InventRight. But the more I watched and understood Donny’s format, I realized InventRight was a very poor match. I was trying to sell apples to a customer looking to buy oranges, and that sort of misunderstanding always results in failure. I needed to reroute my plans, and fast.
I had to laugh. The bottom line? You’re never too experienced to make a rookie mistake. Don’t let excitement and haste derail you from your first and foremost priority: giving the customer what they want.
My next blog will detail the ways in which I saved my attempt and got back on track.