One of my early mentors in graphic design once advised me to keep a sketch book and write down every idea I have. He told me when you’re young, you have lots of ideas but no resources to pull them off. When you get older and finally have the resources, you won’t be able to think of any good ideas.
At the Catalyst Conference in Atlanta last year, Andy Stanley took it one step further. He said the chances are, if you’re over 45, you won’t have any good ideas anymore. Your job is to recognize a good idea when you see it in the younger generation. As Al Reis said,
The Next Generation product almost never comes from the previous generation.
Of course my mind obsessed on the age. While I was excited to hear that I have eight more years of good ideas, I winced at my proximity to that devastating day when all of a sudden, the flow will dry up.
Instead, let me refocus to the fairly obvious conclusion: we need to get the generation with the resources together with the generation with the ideas. Established leaders have the ability and the responsibility to come alongside and sponsor the great ideas of the next generation.
How can we do that? Give me your ideas; I’d like to develop some kind of system for idea sponsorship at Wycliffe.
I need your help on this one, because I’m getting close to that line.