It’s a world where consumers are in control, and geographic barriers are fluid. Talent trumps conformity, ideas trump knowledge and the competitive playing field has leveled and expanded as a result.
If you’re showing up to work each day thinking your traditional, inwardly focused business practices have things under control, you’re not prepared to survive this new world.
To compete nowadays, you need to get out — out in middle of the chaos where different perspectives, generations, cultures and technologies collide for the co-creation of value and innovation.
Consider one of the reasons why consumers like social media: everybody gets an opinion. Consumer opinions are the marketing equivalent of differentiating.
Even among the competing chatter of millions of people espousing their views over new media, novel opinions go viral and people can really make a name for themselves.
The same can be said for all aspects of business and career: innovative ideas — no longer rank, tradition, knowledge or location — differentiate.
That’s why the more you can get out among your peers over social media, at industry meetings and in professional development settings, the more you can disrupt traditional patterns of thinking and ignite the creativity needed to help you adapt and differentiate amid a marketplace that increasingly knows no limits.
We should take lessons from two speakers who are scheduled to appear at Fresh Summit in October.
Outside the box
One is graffiti artist and entrepreneur Erik Wahl. After an eight-year career as a partner in a corporate firm, he grew frustrated by the lack of innovative thought and corresponding profits he saw in business.
He rediscovered his love for art while powering through his frustration in attempt to determine what to do with his career.
The polar opposite of corporate life, graffiti art gave him freedom to break all the rules.
With an unconstrained mind, he saw an opportunity to combine his worlds of graffiti art and business to differentiate himself as a keynote speaker and businessman like no other.
He now says he “plays in the business world by working through his art,” and he encourages business professionals to rediscover their artist within to foster innovation. He leaves the art he paints during his presentations behind as reminders of breakthrough thinking.