‘Bright and early’ is a contradiction. Anyone that has woken up early, really early, will tell you it is not bright. If you wake up early enough, you will either see little or no sunlight at all. As much as this applies to the sun at the start of the day, it applies to innovation in life and leadership.
If you are “bright and early”, you are up before many people are. You are ahead of everybody else. It means you are ‘ahead of the curve’. It means that you do not have the light of the full sun but when it does come you have more to show for it than those who waited for the sun to show up.
Starting out in the true “bright and early” means that you will work in the dark. Innovation rarely exists in full daylight. People willing to work in the dark birth innovation. Innovators are people who are willing to work without knowing fully how something is going to work.
All they know is that for them to be ahead when the sun rises is that they need to be up before it rises. Innovation means trying something out before others have. It means running ahead of the sunlight.
If you are not willing to run in the dark, ahead of the light then innovation will not grace you.
There is no way you can be early with something, a technology, an idea etc, when you start when everyone else does and stop when they do. Those who create the future are those willing to walk in the dark of early.
Those are willing to work with limited information to create something that shatters the limitations the late sleepers thought could not be pushed. Late sleepers are those who think they are early when they rise with the sun.
The believers of the fake bright and early awaken to the shattered boundaries and by those who practice the true bright and early and think they are on the cutting edge, but are actually behind. Innovators do not wait for all the information they need. They do not wait for perfect conditions either.
Innovators work at something because ‘early’ gives the advantage of determining the future
If farmers waited to see how much rain they will receive, first they would never plant in time. If they wait to see how much rainfall they will receive, they will be too late. You cannot be an innovator, or leading the curve until you make darkness your friend. Embrace not knowing and seeing fully and clearly as part of the journey of creating a future that the late sleepers will celebrate as new, when in reality it is old for you.
If you wait to rise with the sun, where everything is clear, visible and certain, you will never innovate. “Bright and early” should be changed to “dark and early”. That is more true and accurate to innovation in life and leadership.