When he was pre-planning Nintendo Wii video game Disney Epic Mickey, gaming legend Warren Spector (creator of classic games System Shock and Deus Ex) took a slightly different approach to how the game would pan out.
Instead of having his best designers, scripters, coders and creatives brainstorming ideas, Spector got a bunch of interns together from the Disney Interactive Studios intern group. He then let them have free range over coming up with ideas on the game’s look, feel and plot.
The result is one of the most unique and successful games from last year’s holiday period, with a great twist in gameplay mechanics. It’s also proof in Warren Spector’s belief in the power of a great idea: you don’t have to have years of experience to come up with greatness.
Now think how your business can transfer a video game’s approach to your overall one.
Age is a Fallacy
As Spector’s use of interns show, age doesn’t always equate to experience. Sure, the older you are, the more experience you have of things. But this generation has grown up with the web as a standard; who do you think would be the best people to have brainstorming a web project, for example?
Think of the people you have versus the people you need – they’re not always the same thing.
Ears Are Better Than Eyes
The first step to any sales success is listening to what the market needs. Sure, as marketers, our job is to provide what the market wants (or at least make the market want our products). But sometimes we really do just need to listen to what the market needs. Our eyes can see trends and results of action; but our ears can get the real story behind the trend (or even before it happens).
Listen more – don’t just rely on sight. Listen to your employees; your customers; your sales team; your competitors. Don’t just accept what you see; interpret what you hear.
Greatness Never Ends
Just because you have one big hit that pays the bills for the next ten years, don’t accept that that’s necessarily all you need to do. Royalties are great but times change – your great idea from last year might be next year’s black sheep.
Continue to push yourself and ask what worked; why it worked; what didn’t; how it can be improved. Acknowledge the great ideas that others have had, and ask how you can adapt to your own needs. Ideas only stop when you’re dead.
How about you – how are you powering your great idea?