For the majority of people working in business, the only fear worse than the fear of death is the fear of failure or looking stupid. Nobody likes to fail or feel they are failing, so often what happens in business, and in-everyday life when an idea is presented that makes you feel uncomfortable or scared, is people will reject it.
If you look at the most successful businesses and brands around, they embrace fearlessness but the majority of the corporate world shy away.
There is a Japanese saying: The nail that sticks up gets hammered down, people usually use this saying to make a point about Japan, how it’s hard to be different, and that any deviance is met with resistance. This is true with most businesses today. However the nail that sticks up is the brave nail. The one everyone can see.
Sometimes brands and businesses need to explore ways to make themselves different in the world and embrace change and new ideas. If you look and act like every other business in your sector then there’s no surprise for the customer. No surprise means there’s nothing new and nothing new means there’s no value. You are essentially the same as everyone else.
If you are presented with an idea for how your business or brand could differentiate and it makes you feel uncomfortable, then that idea is likely to be an innovative one. It’s the ideas that make you sit up, twitch and a little bit scared are the ones that you should take notice of. This is applicable to a business exploring new ideas for a product or service delivery method for example. Also, in the world of design and marketing it’s quite common that the most forward thinking ideas on a rebrand are not taken forward by the client, because of fear.
Fear is good, embrace it and you will help your business and brand achieve greater success.