How Much is a Good Idea Worth?

01/24/2017 02:29 pm ET Updated Jan 25, 2018

How much is a good idea worth? originally appeared on Quora - the knowledge sharing network where compelling questions are answered by people with unique insights.

Answer by Guy Kawasaki, Chief evangelist of Canva, Mercedes-Benz brand ambassador, on Quora.

How much is a good idea worth? "Less than you think" is the honest answer. Good ideas are easy. Implementation is hard. I'll give you a multi-billion dollar good idea: waterproof phone, wireless charging, dual SIM, two-day battery, break-proof screen, best of Android and iOS features, sold through dedicated stores with knowledgeable staff.

How hard could that be?

A big issue with the fantasy of "All I need is a good idea" is that you can only know something was a good idea after it's successful. At inception, it's impossible to know, every time an entrepreneur starts a company or an investor writes a check, they all think it's good idea. And yet 99% fail.

I can shoot down every company that has succeeded and tell you why they weren't good ideas. I can also tell you why every failure could have succeeded. In other words, it's a crap shoot. When you're shooting dice and your number comes up, you can say you "knew" it was going to happen. You just don't remember all the times you crapped out instead.

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