Stay Ahead of the Game: Notice Trends Around You

By Katie Corbett

 

Keeping an eye on what is going on around you can help you take advantage of opportunities. It can even help you create new ones.

 

Phil Knight, who shares his founder’s story of Nike in “Shoe Dog,” created such a successful company because he paid attention to things that were in vogue around him and figured out how to meet previously unmet needs in the footwear industry. Here are some questions I ask myself so that I continue to observe and recognize trends.

 

  • What needs are people expressing around me?
  • What do people want?
  • Have I seen, come across, or heard about an unmet need more than once?
  • Have multiple people expressed this need to me?
  • How do my skillset, personality, and experience put me in a position to meet this need?
  • WHAT is the need?
  • How can I help?
  • How do I want to help?
  • What would I need to do to meet this need?
  • What is the first step to getting started?

 

My garment project stemmed from seeing a need around me. I asked others if they had the same need I felt, and they answered with a resounding “Yes!” From there, a product idea was born. Even though I put that project on hold for the time being, the need definitely still exists. I might come back to it again someday.

 

My story illustrates that it is important to keep in mind that you could have a need that intersects with the needs of others. Keep paying attention to your own needs as well as those of others. You might be surprised about what opportunities come your way as a result of your vigilance.

 

Do you have a story about how paying attention to trends helped you find a new job, volunteer role, or other opportunity? Let me know in the comments.

 

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