When Kevin Systrom came up with the idea for Instagram, he was strolling on a beach in Baja California, Mexico, not staring at a screen. It’s a common theme, according to research published this week. One in five startup ideas come to entrepreneurs while on vacation, according to a survey of 1,000 small business owners (who had successfully been in business five years) in the UK by consultancy Sandler Training.

Work routines today mean people are doing more and thinking less so it’s not surprising, says Bryan Mattimore, author of Idea Stormers: How to Lead and Inspire Creative Breakthroughs. A client recently told him that he “no longer had time to be curious,” he says.

“Vacation is one of the few times, especially if someone has a full-time job, to be able to think deeply about a subject and create something new,” he says.

Getting the chance to read books uninterrupted, try out different food and observe other cultures can all help spark ideas. “Because many things are new on a vacation, it naturally encourages people to transcend their perceptual thinking ruts (they notice the newness around them) which can be great fodder for new ideas,” says Mattimore. “I think being relaxed helps the creative process,” he adds.

“The most important point in this theory though is that ideas emerge when someone frees their mind up to wander – this often doesn’t happen in day to day life,” says Jessica Livingston, founding partner of Y Combinator, Silicon Valley’s best known incubator which has invested in 630 startups to date including Airbnb, Dropbox, Reddit and Instacart.

But how do you actually transform your big idea into reality? Start small and test it out says Livingston. “You don’t need to make a big commitment, you don’t need to start a startup and you don’t need to make a business plan to just see if it works.

“So many people that we interview have this great solution – we call it a solution in search of a problem – it sounds like a really cool application but in reality no one actually wants to use it,” she says.

“When you have an idea you have to talk to potential users.” It’s critical to see how people engage with it and find out if it’s service they might pay to use. The biggest cause of failure is people building something that works but no one uses or they’ll look at it once and never come back to it, says Livingston.

If your idea is technically super complicated, then you have to build it to see if it actually works, says Livingston. Drew Houston was travelling when he thought up the idea for Dropbox and as a programmer he played around with it and created a first version which, although much more basic than Dropbox today, actually worked.

But if you’re not technical it doesn’t mean you’re necessarily out of the running. Livingston says roughly 5% of their founders aren’t technical but they have domain expertise of an industry. It’s a much tougher route though.

“We do fund non technical founders but they have ten times much trouble with their startup because they don’t have someone working with them who is so in tune with the software, the UI and if you’re outsourcing that, it does not work,” she says.

If inspiration does strike while you’re away it might be wise to keep an eye on spending. The UK research also demonstrated that small business owners have to go into debt to fund their startups and are spending an average of £3,511 ($5980) via loans and credit cards, so that they can afford to live before they can take a salary from the business.

Autor: Hollie Slade
Fonte: Forbes, disponível em: https://www.forbes.com/sites/hollieslade/2014/06/30/want-a-brilliant-idea-for-a-startup-go-on-vacation/?utm_campaign=forbeslinkedin&utm_source=linkedin&utm_medium=social