It always shocks me when I see innovative companies dying. Look at Yahoo! (I’m not commanding you. I just didn’t know if I could add a period after an exclamation point.) They were once my search engine of choice. Then Google came along. Yahoo tried to keep up for a while but slowly faded into obscurity.
Sure, people still use Yahoo! But who? And what made this once innovative search engine fade away? Why aren’t they struggling to regain dominance? They failed to adapt.
I’ll give Yahoo! a little credit since they’re in such a quick-changing market. But the fact is, they didn’t adapt quickly enough. In fact, I propose – to be truly successful – we must adapt before it’s clear that we need to.
If you’re adapting to your surroundings, you’re a follower. And followers rarely lead their industry. You can’t lead the pack if you’re scrambling to keep up.
That’s why we always need to keep our ears to the ground. We need to look and see what things are coming instead of the stampede that’s already around us. I love what Steve Jobs said, “People don’t know what they want until you show it to them.” That man may have been arrogant, but he saw what was coming instead of what was here.
So in your church. In your art. In your marketing. Are you adapting quickly enough? Or are you playing catchup? I encourage you to lead the pack instead of struggling to keep up. Look to the horizon instead of staring at your current patch of turf. Adapt. Or die.