“You are building a case study here.”
My boss told me this. It has stuck with me. It is an explicit reminder that we do not hire people to accomplish the same initiatives as their previous employers to replicate here — copy and paste does not apply. Our growth is a different target market. The team is different than the previous company. Our values aren’t the same. The go-to-market strategy is distinct. The environment, the economics, the Geopolitical factors have deviated. Besides, if we needed someone to run a pre-existing playbook then why is our hiring strategy to bring on the best, most creative, flexible people?
Seasoned veterans do not artlessly replicate what has been, but they work together to fashion something new, under different circumstances and dynamics. Imagine being a chef and learning French cuisine in France. To learn the French style and then start your own restaurant, is it enough to simply mimic the exact dishes in the same ways with the same ingredients and same styling as your previous chef had done? Maybe.
That’s the tricky part. Sometimes it doesn’t need to be the same. Many times it needs to be different. The brilliance is knowing what worked and how it worked to re-create the splendid dishes you learned early on. Know how to incorporate ingredients in your new location for their characteristics. It’s not an either/or proposition. Many times a traditional crème brûlée suffices, and sometimes creativity calls for completely changing the entrée. It is wisdom to decipher between the two.
When building the case study, incorporate the past — the history, the successes and failures, and learnings — but not copy. Instead, your future successes depend upon your past experiences, your team’s capabilities, and a compilation of ideas. An open mind and an outlook of creativity will help administer the past to solve the challenges of tomorrow.