Based in Sydney, Australia, Foundry is a blog by Rebecca Thao. Her posts explore modern architecture through photos and quotes by influential architects, engineers, and artists.

5 Steps To Taking More Action

Ideas are great, but we must be able to execute them. Without execution, ideas themselves are pretty worthless. Here are five actions steps to becoming more effective at making your ideas a reality.

When approaching a problem, remove anything that is not essential. Find the essence of the idea. Sometimes you must challenge the “why” to get at the core. Clarity removes the resistance of complexity and allows us to focus our energy on execution. Get lean by getting clarity. 

What gets planned, gets done. You can rework your plan at any time, but you can’t rework a plan that doesn’t exist. Start by asking, “How might we…?” This defines the problem. “How might we create a faster horse?”

Great execution is iterative. Deliver, get feedback, rework. Without the iterative cycle, you get stuck in a “waterfall” project—things keep building, changes keep coming, nothing is ever completed, nothing is ever delivered. Shipping something is better than shipping nothing at all.

Be open about your work. In his most recent book, Share Your Work, author Austin Kleon urges his readers toward “the accountability of transparency.” Sharing makes you accountable to others and opens you up to feedback. Feedback makes us better. Nothing will accelerate your ideas more than constructive feedback.

Every project reaches decision points. Too often, we let these moments paralyze us, and we end up not moving forward. We tell ourselves, “Wherever we are now is better than a wrong decision.” Most of the time, this isn’t true at all. The world needs you and your ideas. The world without you is not better. When you are stuck, choose. Do something.

These five action steps come straight out of my recent book, Rhythm: How To Make Great Things Happen. Grab it now on Amazon to go more in-depth on the topic of executing ideas.

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