In today’s Amazon-impacted, data overloaded world, it is one BIG challenge to just “keep up”. How are you keeping up with the latest industry trends, noteworthy products, emerging technologies and more?
It would be easy to spend 40 hours a week just “keeping up”. Of course, I wouldn’t recommend that as your competition would be happy to speed on by. However, this idea got me thinking about how executives should “keep up”.
Time isn’t a resource. We cannot make more time. On the other hand, time is a matter of priority. When we answer, “I don’t have time for that,” it means we aren’t prioritizing that topic or that person. We cannot prioritize everyone and every topic including how to stay up-to-speed.
A few recommendations for executives to stay up-to-date on relevant information without taking “too much” time:
- Make it a priority for your team to stay up-to-date. If each of your team members is up-to-date on relevant information for his/her area, it will be half the battle. Ask for a bullet point summary of highlights.
- Talk with customers. One priority you cannot delegate is a certain amount of customer interaction and discussion on trending topics. How else will you steer the ship?
- Attend key industry conferences. Typically, there is a flagship industry event our clients attend. No matter how busy, make room in your schedule to attend, meet with customers and suppliers and find out what is trending.
- Focus some attention on your strategic differentiation. For example, a few clients are expert at sourcing. Thus, they better put some focus on this topic. Others are expert at manufacturing, e-commerce or a technical topic. Stay abreast of key trends.
- Skim industry articles & the Wall Street Journal. Staying current on key events and how they could impact your industry and your company is essential.