It’s a bitter cold morning and even though I’m layered up, I think to myself, “if I don’t start seeing action soon I’m going to be shivering my ass off.” Just as these thoughts come out a young 8 pointer chasing a doe stops directly under my tree. I smile knowing it’s going to be a good day and things are about to heat up–in just about every way!
The coolest thing about this hunt is that I made a tweak and it appears to have made all the difference. Having hunted this area for years, I started thinking that perhaps I was missing deer movement in the dense cedar curtain behind me to the west. I snuck in yesterday and moved the stand a few trees over, really just a tweak, but it appears that the tweak worked as I look up and see two more bucks and five does making their way towards me. I realize that all those years, even with these deer being within 40 yards of my old stand location, I never would have seen nor heard them. Wow, that one got me thinking…
A few months back my good friend and our former Chicago Territory Sales Director at Outdoor Hub, Steve Petersen, reminded me of the “innovation” that we introduced with Outdoor Hub.
“Farbz, think about what we did man,” he said. “We revolutionized the way companies reach consumers and made the outdoors a relevant vertical online, before anyone even measured it. We created a market.”
“Yeah, but look at what we are doing with daily content and our widget technology today,” was my first response. “I mean those were just the beginning tweak moves we made back in 2007.” As the words came out of my mouth I started reflecting on what he had just said and what I said in return minimizing his statement and I thought to myself, “Farbz you need to go and think on this one when you get the chance.”
The other night I thought about Steve’s words and I also remembered the previously mentioned hunt where by moving a few trees over and just inside the cedar swamp, I completely changed the game. Both of these events seem to point to a common theme about innovation and how often in life it is only a tweak away. I say out loud to myself, “perhaps we over-think what innovation really is, perhaps it is only a tweak away.”
I started thinking about the simple tweaks that have represented many modern day innovations. Take Twitter for example, which simply limited the characters in a message and was made for stream of consciousness thoughts to be tweeted. This innovative tweak on the way social messages are conveyed has been a game changer to the social media landscape. Or consider Facebook, which stepped in and squashed Myspace as the social network hot spot by simplifying the interface and cleaning it up, making it more user-friendly. Want to drop back further? How about when Pepsi used a little more sugar and different marketing and creative spins than Coca-Cola, or when Pepsi simply under-priced Coke in a down economy and in turn became the affordable brand? The list goes on and on and on.
The take away value, the breakthrough thought for you to consider is that sometimes in life innovation is only a tweak away. I think perhaps the most common confusion people have with innovation is over-estimating what it is. Too many times we assume you need to re-invent the wheel, when all that may be needed is a really smart tweak, an innovative tweak.
I come to full draw and aim my sight on the vitals of a mature 9-point that is quartering away from me and I release my arrow and it is a fatal hit. I watch the old brute fall and the adrenaline rush is insane! In all the excitement I still cannot believe how small of an adjustment, how simple of a tweak it was that gave me the breakthrough moment and my trophy! Is your trophy or your innovation only a tweak away?
Original image by Jeremy Henricks