The usefulness of fear

Fear is such a crucial aspect when talking about innovation and diffusion.

Fear is what holds most people back from taking that risk.
Fear is what holds most people back from diffusing that risky product to their social environment.

Some people take that risk, they overcome fear, and are rewarded with a chance to gain a higher social status.
This risk can only be taken by specialists in their domain, or expert opinion leaders.

This is the way fear has established the innovation and diffusion proces with a quality norm.

Useful indeed.

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One Response to The usefulness of fear

  1. Moorke says:

    Agree. Within existing domains expertised people are more likely to take that step. Fear keeps the unexperienced at a distance. Luckily perhaps.

    However, if we are really talking “innovation” than there’s no such thing as domain, specialist or expert. It’s blank, new & unexploited.

    So unfortunately fear is also what makes us try less often, affecting even the very talented people. Most people avoid error, but in doing so they avoid trial.

    My point; groundbreaking innovations are led by the ones being successful in persevering, and not per se by the ones being most talented. Hence, I don’t see the usefulness of fear over the full line.

    http://sethgodin.typepad.com/seths_blog/2009/12/fear-of-bad-ideas.html

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