Section Three: Early Adopters or Visionaries
Pastor: There’s a light bulb burnt out in the sanctuary. Can you help?
Early Adopter: Has anyone analyzed whether it’s in our best interests to spend the extra money on those long lasting bulbs?
OBSERVATIONS, QUOTES AND ASSUMPTIONS: Agree or disagree?
A. Early Adopters are more local and in touch with the local network. They ask questions. They exercise a high degree of opinion leadership in the social system. While aware of innovations, they remain homophilous and are perceived by the majority as role models and “the individual to check with.” The innovation bridges from the outsider Innovators to the early majority through the persistent, enthusiastic support of Early Adopters.
B. Early Adopters have a bias for action and corresponding tendency to be very busy. Early Adopters want to translate ideas into applications. Early Adopters are like engineers; they like to implement technology. They love to fine tune the machinery and make things work more efficiently. Early Adopters will naturally adapt and reinvent innovations for local usage.
E. Early Adopters are interested in ideas for the sake of their potential benefits. Early Adopters desire freedom to innovate and experiment for the best possible results. Early Adopters are entrepreneurs in search of successful differentiation. They want to express themselves. Early Adopters dislike checks, controls and prerequisites.
 The quote is a selection from David O. Kueker’s Fuller Seminary Doctor of Ministry project submitted in September, 2007, entitled Diagnosis, Dialogue, and Decision: A Threefold Process of Revitalization For the Illinois Great Rivers Conference.
It is shared here in recognition of its 12th Anniversary along with comments to update and provide perspective on the material. The original project was a Training Manual/Study Guide of three Seminars supported by three chapters of research and an Introduction. The material is available for download at www.disciplewalk.com/Resources.html. In 2009 it was provided for purchase as a softcover book entitled Designing Discipleship Systems: Christian Disciple Making For Any Size Church, Any Theology through CreateSpace.com.
   
All Scripture quotations are from the Revised Standard Version of the Bible, copyright © 1946, 1952, and 1971 National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved. Please review the page How and Why We Use Quotes.
Rogers, Diffusion of Innovations, 264.