_It doesn’t really matter what you’re developing, as long as you have the right kind of confidence. Self-confidence is wonderful, but it’s far less important than confidence in the idea. Honestly, I’ve never been the most self-assured person. But I’ve always been unwavering in my confidence that every concept I’ve helped launch—standalone IA consulting services, the Polar Bear book, enterprise IA seminars, the IAI, UXnet, and now Rosenfeld Media—made absolute sense, despite how I might have felt about myself at the time.
I bring up this obvious point because it’s not always so obvious. Anytime you float your big new idea, you make yourself incredibly vulnerable. You’ll find that smart people often won’t understand your concept, and others will find ways to pick it apart just because. Will you be prepared to deal with criticism from both the people you respect and, perhaps, from those who you don’t? Yes, if you have the right kind of confidence.
How will you know if you have it? See how you feel about your Big Idea on your absolutely worst day in recent memory, the day you stepped on the cat’s tail, dozed off during your daughter’s recital, forgot your mother’s birthday, and lost out on your dream job. You may feel like a worthless piece of garbage, but if you still think your idea is a winner, then it probably is._