"I have an idea! Can you help me?" This is one of the most frequently asked questions we get at Girls With Ideas. Our curriculum discusses in depth about how to do just that for girls in grades 4th-8th grade. You can get it HERE!
However, we wanted to help you take that idea from your head and make it a reality so we are doing a mini blog series with tips on how to make your idea happen no matter your age! Our first post on this topic discussed how to do market research and interview people about your idea. You can find that here!
After you have gathered research and feedback from interviewing people about your idea, you need to decide if you think it is worthwhile to pursue it. Look at what people said when you interviewed them. Did their feedback indicate that your idea would be something they would support? Did they provide ideas for other things you need to research first? Were there themes in what they said? Did any of their feedback make your pivot, or change your initial idea?
After you have decided to continue working on your idea, it's time to take that feedback and create an Idea Plan! A plan helps you think through everything you need to do and prepare for before jumping in. While you can't plan for everything, being thoughtful before can help you be more successful because it helps you anticipate the resources and help you may need.
Making an Idea Plan is simple! Get out your favorite notebook or set of sticky notes and write down your answers to the following three questions.
1. Who Are Your Stakeholders?
Stakeholders are the people or organizations that your idea will affect. It is important in your plan to create a list of the stakeholders you will need to talk with to ensure your idea is possible and/or that people will support it! For example, if you are looking to start a program at your school it would be important to first talk to the stakeholders like the principal or teachers to get permission and make sure they would support your idea.
2. How Much Money Will You Need?
To think about how much money you need, go through every step of making your idea happen and write down the things that you will need to purchase. Then research how much each item will cost. This will allow you to figure out how much money you need. but will also allow you to look at the prices of items individually. By doing this you can see if you could borrow those items or get them donated to save money. Many ideas you can make happen for free!
If only money grew on trees!
3. What Other Resources Will You Need?
Ideas require a lot of resources other than just money. Here are a list of common resources you will need to think about for your idea.
- Time: How much time do you estimate it will take you to get your idea going? How much time will implementing your idea take? Is it something you will do just once, weekly, etc.
- People: Do you need others to help you? How many people would you need and when?
- Physical Space: Are you holding an event or meetings where you need physical space?
- Supplies: You may have thought of some supplies you need to purchase when thinking about the money you will need. However, there are supplies you may need that you already have like scissors, pencils, etc. It is still important to list out everything you need even if you already have access to it.
- Mentors: Are there any people that could be a resources for advice or connections in making your idea happen?
Our next blog post will discuss how to create SMART goals and action steps for your answers to these questions! Keep thinking and stay tuned!