I teach trendspotting in my LIS701 and LIS768 courses. This post is very helpful for understanding the process:
How do I become a better trendwatcher?
- First of all, make sure you acquire a point of view about the world around you. The more trends you spot and track, and the more skilled you are at putting these trends in a context, the more guidance you’ll have.
- Crucial to broadening your point of view: be curious and be open minded. Not an easy thing to do. We’re all set in our ways, we all have our strict beliefs about what is right and what is wrong. Ask yourself ‘why’ whenever you notice something new, instead of immediately looking for shortcomings.
- Also realize that you are not necessarily your customer: your professional interests should be broader than your personal interests. You may not be excited by something new, but others are. Ask yourself why they are excited and which existing need has apparently been unlocked.
- Stop being ‘just’ a specialist and aim to become a generalist. Yes, we all need to be a specialist in something. However, we also need to be generalists, to understand the big picture and how we and our companies and products fit in.
These are some things that helped me gather my Ten Trends & Technologies for 2009.