Hudson Fysch and Paul McGuiness, two of the founders of the Queensland and Northern Territory Aviation Service had an idea. Road transport at the turn of the century was slow, unreliable, boggy and often came to a dead standstill. There had to be a better way of moving people and cargo. Why not fly right over the problem in a flying machine and be done with the inconveniences of road travel? But how to persuade the critics?
In the very early days of air travel, building a business from scratch was all about marketing. Those magnificent men in their flying machines, took their aircraft to the men and women of outback Queensland and persuaded them to have a joy ride – the best way to generate interest to the skeptical and suspicious public.
The flights were by no means comfortable. Passengers, jammed into an open cockpit, were subject to the rain, wind, oil from the engine, and a noise that left some temporarily deaf after they landed. Of course in the initial stages the engines were often unreliable, meaning that forced landings were common. Still, air travel was faster than coach or bullock dray and the skeptics slowly became convinced that QANTAS was onto a good thing.
Ideas starts small. It can be novel and daring. A risk that is often met with cynicism by an unbelieving public. But Fysch and McGuiness shrugged their shoulders and with a boldness that carried their idea said, ‘Be damn with the doubters’. Despite setbacks and the drone of voices in their ears that claimed, ‘It will never work’, they pressed ahead. On 29th November, 1920 the first QANTAS was registered as a going concern in Brisbane. The rest is history.
But the power of an idea is not. What is brewing below the surface of the known that is waiting in each of us to be birthed? What are we longing to attempt? Who can we share it with? Like Fysch and McGuiness we need the support of those who will shrug off the cries of those who say it can’t be done and run with the power of our idea. We will never be truly satisfied until we give it a go. There is anguish living with the thought that our idea just may work, yet we never had the gumption to let it play out. Be inspired by the story of QANTAS. It will take courage. It will take persistence. And it just might work.