Creating Something from Nothing


It's my “One Thing” – Creating something from nothing

When you get past all my relationships – my wife, my kids, my brother & his family, and friends – there is nothing, and I mean nothing, that I love more than the act of creation.

Creating something from nothing.

It's been a theme in my life for as long as I can remember. From grade school writing stories to my professional career in software, to even my work in non-profits and churches, the theme has always been about creating something from nothing and then helping it grow.

  • Startups – where I build a company
  • Products – where I build a set of features
  • Churches – where I build a community
  • Teams – where I build capacity

In every case, I focus on creating what's not there already. Something new. And I do it by asking myself a set of questions – to focus me, to challenge me, and to get me jotting down notes that will help me talk about things with others.

So today, because it's Christmas and I want to give you this little gift, I'm going to give you the 25 questions that I use when creating something from nothing.

My 25 Questions

  1. If I don't create this, will anyone notice?
  2. If I don't create this, will someone else create it?
  3. Has someone else already created something like it?
  4. What issue will this solve?
  5. Are people already solving this issue with something else?
  6. How serious is this issue?
  7. Is this just for me, or will others value this?
  8. How many others would appreciate this?
  9. Is my solution easy to explain?
  10. Will others be able to talk about my solution easily?
  11. As others talk about it, what are some of the objections they'll hear?
  12. Upon hearing it, will others want to participate? If not, how can I reframe things?
  13. Has this ever been tried before?
  14. If so, what can I learn from it? If not, is there an obvious reason why not?
  15. If I had to articulate the pain it resolves, could I do it in one sentence?
  16. If I had to articulate the benefit it delivers, could I do it in one sentence?
  17. Do I have a clear sense of the mission? If not, how I can I get it?
  18. Do I have a set of strategies that will help me reach my destination? If not, who can I talk to?
  19. Do I have the team assembled to take the journey with me? If not, can someone help me?
  20. How will I know when I've “made it?”
  21. What will it cost to get there?
  22. What will I do if it costs more? Am I willing to pay the price?
  23. Who can I partner with? Do I have my pitch ready to win them over?
  24. What resources have I already assembled?
  25. What is my first best step?

What's your one thing?

If your one thing is to create stuff, then maybe my questions helped you. But if that's not your one thing, what is? Do you know? If you haven't yet figured it out, but you think 2013 is the year to do it, hit me up (contact page) and let me know.

I'll be introducing a special online version of an off-line program I've been leading people thru for the last several years that may be interesting to you.Another way to keep in touch as I roll out additional online courses and publish a few more eBooks is to sign up from my newsletter. It's the gold box up on the right.