The word sparks excitement in people and government as it’s viewed as the engine of personal economic and business growth – we associate the term with creativity and innovation along with independence and freedom – doing things our way.  The entrepreneur is seen as an independent thinker that can take ideas and turn them into a sustainable service or product.

The entrepreneur has a special way of looking at opportunities and is able to fire their passion with creativity and unlimited possibility.  The entrepreneurial mind thinks in terms of potential and asks the question “how do we make this happen?”  If the answer is not evident, they ask a different question until solutions start to take shape.  The entrepreneurial mind thinks in 4-D and is able to do this intuitively while scanning the horizon for opportunities.

Innovative Idea – the entrepreneur sees ideas and solutions to current and future situations for individuals and organizations.  The idea is a solution that will enrich a process, activity or life contrary to the problem solving most frequently associated with entrepreneurial ideas – the iPhone created a lifestyle.  The innovative idea has a purpose and meaning for the entrepreneur and engages their passion.

Discover – curiosity to see where an idea can go, how it can strengthen and enrich an experience the entrepreneur is seeking.  The purpose of an idea is to create an engaging experience and involve others in the discussion; an exploration of the potential co-creates a shared purpose.

Dream – create a vision that gives life to a purpose or idea and asks the question: what will the world experience or look like when the idea is fully integrated into daily life?  How people experience the idea and how it enhances their life are questions the dream will answer, at the same time bringing energy to the entrepreneur’s purpose.

Design – building a process or infrastructure that will allow people to experience an idea or purpose as envisioned will be a critical step for the entrepreneur.  Here there is a separation from wish to reality – this is where purpose is operationalized in a manner that is simple, transparent and engaging and will identify the high-impact design elements that give life to purpose and allow experiences to evolve organically.

Destiny – take action on the high impact design elements and celebrate their successful implementation.  Actions will allow for new experiences for the end-user while creating momentum for future actions and broadening the community of shared purpose.

While it may seem easy to the external world, the entrepreneur is disciplined and focused on bringing to life their purpose and enriching the experiences of end-users.  Future blogs will explore the 4-D thought process in more detail – till then see oak trees in acorns!

By: Ralph Weickel