Originality is the key to success. Creativity is the key to success. Surround yourself with good people. Draft the perfect business plan. Perfect your SEO. Nail your 30 second elevator pitch.
I’ve read dozens of business books and hundreds of blogs. I’ve listened to podcasts and dug through forums for nuggets of gold. I’m looking for the recipe for success. What is the combination I need to get together to bake this perfect pie I want a piece of?
Following recipes is a relatively easy notion. Add flour, water, and baking powder in the specified amounts. Mix it up and chuck it into your preheated oven. Ta-da, baked goods! We like recipes because they take the guesswork out—plus some people have created some really delicious stuff!
The similarity of business and recipes is that they often need to be tweaked. A recipe never accounts for the exact type of ingredients you are subbing in. You need to adjust. Of course, that takes a little bit of knowledge of what you are doing and what you can change.
That kind of works in business too except for the whole notion of a recipe.
In your chosen industry there are fundamental steps that everyone agrees on. Definitely follow those but realize it does not guarantee success out of the gates. As someone who has started a business I know it doesn’t happen overnight and there is no instruction manual.
That doesn’t mean I didn’t look for one. I’m telling you this because I’ve realized that there is no silver bullet. As nice as it would be to pick up the manual and follow the perfectly laid out instructions, it doesn’t exist. No one will tell you that though.
All of the books sell you on the notion that they will turn you into a success story. That’s not to say there isn’t a wealth of incredibly useful information in these books. We can learn from others mistakes and successes. We simply won’t ever be able to follow their exact path.
Ouch. Harsh. Life is tough—No, I don’t mean to discourage you. Quite the opposite.
Knowing there is no specific path you must walk means you can blaze your own. Learn from others and find your way to the top your own way. By all means take council and find mentors but do the leg work yourself.
It can be a struggle seeing others succeed with what we consider subpar or lacklustre. It’s difficult to wrap our heads around how they are doing it and doing it so well. The reason is they found their own way. They either found or stumbled upon what works best for their business. That’s where it starts—with your business.
There are too many factors and variables to consider when looking at another startup. It’s like reversing engineering a signature dish. It all came together because the right variables lined up with their specific expertise.
We’ve all seen the knock offs. Transmorphers and Chop Kick Panda never lived up to their inspirations. They never succeeded because they lacked originality despite following a seemingly successful path.
But just because there is no recipe for you to follow, that doesn’t mean you’re entirely on your own. All of that information you’ve absorbed all act as ingredients to your perfect soufflé. The recipe you create contains all the little secrets that make it next level.
The trick is infusing your signature soufflé with originality while keeping it from deflating.