Society, in general, has a great deal of difficulty coming up with an appropriate reaction to ‘over the top’. Whereas in one circumstance, one group embraces opinions or plans of action, another group will completely disagree and fight to keep it out. These two groups generally belong to the same business.
The definition by Merriam Webster, states that ‘over the top’ includes: “going beyond what is expected, usual, normal or appropriate.” Excluding the last one, which again, is based on interpretation, is that not what every business strives for? To separate themselves from the norm.
Therefore, why is there such an outcry for over the top thinking and actions? Following are some typical reasons:
Fear: An unknown is a scary place. There is a great resistance to action unless people feel that the risk of standing still is greater than moving into the unknown.
Status quo: “Everything is going along just fine why do we need to go in a different direction?” Well, a long time ago reading by candlelight was just fine. Then along came Thomas Edison to spoil it all.
Poor communication: We all must make sure any ‘over the top thinking’, or actions must be communicated precisely to everyone that may be affected by the action.
That is but only three in a very long list.
The fact remains that in order for any business to grow and prosper one needs to continually come up with ideas and concepts that may seem a little ‘over the top’. If one always plays it safe and follows everyone else, then one will remain with everyone else. Is that the reason you are in business? To be like everyone else?
Certainly, there will be times where your ideas or actions will not work. If we, however, think back to Edison; when asked how he felt about all the times he failed with the lightbulb, he responded: “I never failed. I just found 10,000 ways it doesn’t work.” The truth of the matter is he at least kept up with the ‘over the top’ thinking that it would work. I can’t begin to tell you how many of my ideas, which are almost always ‘over the top’, have landed like a lead balloon. However, like Edison, I move on to the next one. You see, I don’t want to ever hear: “You are just like _____ .”
The outcome of doing what you are currently doing is well known. Is that all you want to accomplish? Have you ever had ‘over the top’ thinking in other facets of your life? Great, that makes you creative, something that schools have tried to stop you from becoming.
Run your ideas past others to see if there is any traction. By the way, the more they state that it is completely ridiculous with no hope, the more you may actually have something, but it may need a little tweak here and there.
Every great invention started with an ‘over the top’ thinking concept. Every company was started with an ‘over the top’ action and every leader builds their reputation in their ‘over the top thinking’ and actions.
Have you got an idea that you are dying to put into action? Fantastic! Put it into action. How will you know if it is brilliant or a dud unless you take the action?
Remember, you are meant to be ahead of the herd. Go ‘over the top’.