Have you ever noticed that the first people to try something new are treated as outcasts? Think about it. This is particularly true as it pertains to teenagers, music and fashion. Think about the kids with the long hair, then the short hair, then the colored hair and the no hair. The first kids to wear grunge were considered bums. Nobody understood rap or gangsta to start and now it is some of the fastest selling music.
The same thing is true in business. Those who believed the internet would change the world were thought to be wasting their time. The first leaders that believed people could work from home were considered crazy. How would we ever keep track of them? The forward-looking leaders that first understood the importance of executing flawless complex supply chains were exiled. Now we all know the supplier chain management is a competitive discriminator. There are still many leaders that have not embraced the impact web 2.0 can have. Many of us already use it as the norm.
If you accept that these pioneers are lonely front liners, then that is exactly where we should always be looking for talent. Leaders need to look for what is new and where trends are headed.
How do you stay current and find fresh ideas, talent and trends?