How to Get Your “Ideaflow” Going

Brian Davis walking in downtown Greenville
Bryan Davis is a leader and resource in the StartupGVL ecosystem.

Launching a new venture is not for everyone but operating with the same entrepreneurial mindset as the community surrounding you, adds tremendous value. Greenville is one of the most entrepreneur-friendly cities in the Southeast. Our ecosystem is full of resources to help founders thrive.

So how do you hone-in on your own version of that mindset?

Beyond the daily grit and hustle, an entrepreneurial mindset is the inclination to think creatively, a willingness to take calculated risks and embrace challenges as opportunities. It’s knowing you won’t possibly get things done perfectly every time and demonstrating resilience to learn from that and choose to bounce back.

Bryan Davis (center) with the Hill Institute team, Kelly Bard (left) and Paul Peart II(right).

There’s “learning and winning,” not “losing and winning.” While it can be easy to think you’re simply not wired with that mindset, it’s important to know that it’s not 100% an inborn trait; rather, it’s a skill that CAN be learned and practiced.

To truly develop an entrepreneurial mindset, you’ll have to be okay with a little discomfort. That means a willingness to try things outside of what you “usually do” and stretching as a person. Beyond the discomfort, you have to lean into your creativity and challenge yourself to approach things with a different perspective.

Part of entrepreneurism is doing things in a way no one has thought to do them before, and not always in some mind-blowing revolutionary fashion. Incremental innovation is still innovation.

Here’s a simple challenge you can use to assess and track your entrepreneurial mindset that’s all about pushing yourself to be creative:

  • Take one task or goal you have in your job
  • Set a timer for five minutes
  • Write out as many ideas as possible for how you could accomplish that task.
  • Practice this every week

This is a concept called “ideaflow” and it’s critical to any vibrant organization and successful founder.

Ideaflow is being solution-oriented, not problem-oriented. Developing an entrepreneurial mindset is an ongoing journey of personal growth and self-discovery. It isn’t something developed overnight. Continue to embrace the journey and watch as you create a more valuable future.

About the Author

Bryan Davis

Bryan Davis is the Executive Director of the Hill Institute for Innovation and Entrepreneurship at Furman University, which helps aspiring entrepreneurs and founders launch social and entrepreneurial ventures in the Greenville area. Bryan doesn’t just work with entrepreneurs, he is one! Bryan’s ventures include Davis Design Furniture, a hobby turned business of building handcraft, one-of-a-kind pieces of furniture from material from around the world. Some of Bryan’s work has been featured in national publications.
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