Three Idea Stealers the world is proud of.

Business idea

Every now and then you will come across people who claim to have hit their ‘eureka’ moments and have come up with some great ideas. They always tend to over emphasize the ‘Great thing’ in their great ideas. And then someday these ideas fall either since someone has already implemented or the genius never executed it the way the idea deserved to be executed.

I agree with all Pareto lovers who say planning is of 80% importance and that sharpening your saw should be your winning strategy. But what we tend to forget is that an Idea without proper Execution is as good as being idealess. Great strategies and plans fall prey to poor execution. So shouldn’t we (if nothing great clicks) just snatch a pre-built idea and execute it in much better way to gain market share. Agreed, that unique and new ideas will be huge disruptors some day. But we need to understand what we want to be – An Inventor or an Entrepreneur? So if nothing seems to click why not snatch an idea whose proto type has already been implemented. Cunning it may seem but it also works!

I present 3 great idea stealers who took the baton, from others who scrapped their heads, and turned those ideas around to create an impact that has changed the way we live. You may agree with some points and may reject some, but end of the day the truth is – they have done it already and left a mark (stealing ideas of course) 😉

  1. The number one in the list is Thomas Alva Edison. Meet any ordinary student and ask him to say the biggest invention you think Edison did? Very good chances are that the answer would be the Electric Bulb. It will be a surprise if you don’t know the light bulb idea actually was not from Edison. He took an age old written down idea and turned it around with couple of changes to make a product he will always be remembered for. Rather what’s important for you to know is, that this great idea stealer is a master in this art and had several patents in his name which were amendments taken forward from where others left. Now re-think was he an inventor or an entrepreneur.
  2. Bill Gates: Next on the list is the man who turned the dumb terminal to a personal computer revolution. With being on Forbes richest list for more than 10 times in a row, the ideas that he implemented at Microsoft (most of them if not all) were a replica of some ones initiative. He and Microsoft has been much criticized for ages but the fact remains that even after so many years of existence the open source alternatives and other competitors who have raving fans are not able to break the dominance that Microsoft has. It seems he has mastered this art well when it comes to software.
  3. Third entry on my list is a bit controversial. I wanted it to. I am looking for a much recent example so that we add people of different generations. So I nominate this 25 year old chap, yes you got it Mark Zuckerberg the founder of Facebook. In case if you don’t know this idea was initially worked upon by a team who took assistance from Mark for development. Mark later moved on to steal this idea and Launch Facebook. The original is ConnectU. The thing to note is that neither there are tons of patents in his name nor he has created an enterprise on his own. But we do need to remember that this chap at age of 20 has launched something which is a phenomenon so to say. There were honchos like Yahoo, Google and even Microsoft already in the field and he comes up with a theft to create his own niche. Although not truly accepted, Facebook post Microsoft’s purchase of 1.6% stake becomes a 15 billion dollar entity. Analyst deny this figure but whatever figure they suggest is way beyond the reach of an ordinary 25 year old geek.

We can add many more to this list. The list can go on, but the central idea is if 20% is really going to effect the 80% of your project why not make that 20 % the most reliable thing. Now if that means getting influenced by an idea, why not! Go ahead beg, borrow, steal!

Thinking is easy, acting is difficult, and to put one’s thoughts into action is the most difficult thing in the world. – Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

Do you think of any company, product, person, entity etc that suddenly comes to your mind when we talk about idea stealers, go ahead shout out..

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Atul July 9, 2009 at 1:50 pm

Hey dude, that was a great insight you gave all of us,esp. me. I searched for ideas for so many years and left most of them coz they either have been published in some magazine or been implemented on a small scale but now i know where to strike the hammer!!

Thanks for a great article.

Chanda Himanshu July 9, 2009 at 3:02 pm

Thanks Atul. Be around here often and you might get you next big idea 😉

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