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The Truth Is Already Out There

Date - 10 April 2016/ Category - Facts Of Life
Facts of life

When I was 21 I wrote my dissertation on Chinese market theory in the 15th century and comparisons we could draw to it in a post economic crash.

It sounds grand thing and admittedly it’s nice to put on your CV but the premise was quite simple.

Back when I was studying economics, I came up with a theory about contracts and how in the modern world they aren’t worth the paper they are written on.

Most people assume contracts are binding, but civil cases take both time and money to resolve and as such for most small claims they are all but worthless because they cost more in opportunities, time and money to enforce than they do to collect.

While I was writing a paper that put this into a formula, my research stumbled upon a concept from the 15th Century that was almost identical.

As you can imagine this was a hefty blow. Not only was my idea about 600 years out of date, but it was so significant that an entire economy was founded upon it.

The theory was that small traders didn’t need contracts (because of the cost to enforce them) and as such people would be better off trading in an economy where the fear of shame (poor online ratings in today’s terms) far outweighed the benefits of ripping someone off.

Now I had two options here, still write my paper or completely change it to compare a15th century market economy to the modern day; I chose the latter.

Finding out that my brand new idea was really old was a revelation.

I think it’s fair to say that one of the best things that happened to me was realising that most ideas aren’t actually new. There are lots of old wives tales, song, and stories passed down through the generations that until this point I had taken with a pinch of salt, but actually when you go back and apply them to the modern world they turn out to be fact.

While this isn’t going to help you start the next twitter, you’ll be surprised just how many of the little problems you’re going to face along the way of starting your own business have already been faced by others and solved.

Yet for some reason, as a world despite having an incredible ability to communicate with each other, we choose simply not to ask the right questions.

Whether it’s finance, staff, training or sales, nothing you will do is revolutionary. Thousands of entrepreneurs have faced the same problems you face and have been in the same position.

If you’re struggling and need to find the light then simply ask for help; because the answer is already out there.

The answer you need is probably to someone else a really simply task that they faced years ago and now do without thinking. It’s the wisdom we all wish we had and the real reason we employ people who have been there and done that; because they have the answers we want.

Chapter Summary:

• Your bright idea has probably already been thought of
• The problems you face have already been faced
• Don’t be afraid to ask for help

Read our next blog post “The curse of the project”.

Tags :

problems, help, ideas,