It can be a great learning experience to go where you don’t belong.
I attended a Tech Summit sponsored by SKC Communications a couple weeks ago. I don’t need AudioCodes’ Networking VoIP hardware or TASKE’s call center management software. I felt just a little guilty talking to vendors on the floor hoping to make a sale or meet a prospect.
But I loved the exposure to a whole new set of products and ideas that might not directly touch the work I do, but spur new ways of thinking about how maybe they should. I enjoyed hearing a vision of the future from companies like Cisco and Avaya.
Unified communications has huge implications for market research, insights and strategy—from analytics to CRM to surveys and focus groups. I’ll write more on that in a future post.
But the most important lesson is how much you can learn by stepping outside of your professional niche and spending some time learning about other cool things, simply following your curiosity and taking advantage of odd opportunities and happenstance meetings.