Incredibly Boring Success

Groundbreaking inventions are super boring.

Mark Ovaska
2 min readAug 7, 2018

I was lying on my back watching the sky over the abandoned factories of Rochester, NY. A friend and I had decided to spend a week brainstorming ideas that would transform the world and make us rich. No client work, only brainstorming — full time… for a week. It was Friday and our exhaustion seemed to make our lying belly-up all the more appropriate.

Back at the office our whiteboard had a plan for dethroning DeBeers. We would build a diamond exchange to democratize the insular and monopolistic industry. We had insider knowledge, done research, and leveled a sound approach. We knew the risks and the way we’d make it big. We’d drawn an exciting business plan.

Nothing happened with any of it.

Looking back the problem is clear. We were chasing ideas to build opportunities. We should have been chasing opportunities to uncover great ideas. The difference is crucial.

Ideas that appear outside of nurturing circumstances have little chance of survival.

Later on, my company won a contract to build a global marketing platform. The concept was simple: build a digital alternative for shipping hard drives around the globe. In fact, it was…



Mark Ovaska

Serial entrepreneur and photojournalist. Husband, father, global citizen.