The technology explosion is forcing us to move quickly. Really quickly. The world is changing SO quickly that it’s hard to stay on top of the constant change – especially when it comes to technology, and its impact on business. “Old ways” of doing things are being disrupted. What to do?! Just do it. Just hop on. If I can do it anyone can!
Do WHAT ?!
Read. Open. Follow. Check it out. Huh?
Here’s how. Read. Read. Read. Whatever you happen to be interested in, follow it. Probe. Dive in. Somehow I seem to think I am managing to keep up with “the new” ..maybe I am fooling myself – but I feel good about my own personal “continuing ed” program!
Here’s how I keep up:
1) Read anything you can get your hands on. I read in the morning before the kids are awake, read while waiting for carpool, read in the bathtub (true). My favorite categories happen to be business, start-ups, digital, anything Chicago and parenting.
2) Keep your iPhone handy. If you read something cool go directly to Twitter and follow it. Even better, if you are near your laptop, press the url once you get to the Twitter handle and check out what the company does.
3) Use your “Peter Lynch approach” and take a look at the company. (Peter Lynch: Fidelity Investments stock-picker whom I’ve always admired for his no-nonsense approach to understanding what a company does and how it plans to make money. )
4) When you have extra time (say on a weekend) dive deeper. Whatever your category is, dive. Look at lists. Again, I like business. Maybe I’ll spend extra time checking out TechCrunch’s top 25 start-ups in CA. Then I’ll probe – see what they are, get my iPhone so I can follow them on Twitter, etc Maybe I’ll look at Crain’s 40 under 40 and dive deep; maybe I’ll read a few articles in Barron’s or Fortune and get out my iPhone again. Or, if the computer is nearby, I’ll go check out the start-up and watch its 1 minute vimeo/company promo – I just love seeing how and what a new company is doing!
EVENTUALLY, a pattern will emerge: you will begin to see similar sectors experiencing growth. You’ll begin to see certain areas that entrepreneurs are “going after”. You’ll see real live age-old problems trying to be solved. (Example: EDUCATION!) The race to use technology to disrupt “old ways” will begin to make sense for you – at least some sense. Maybe you love fashion and once you begin to see trends emerge (the box/club/whatever of the month) – start thinking about your habits. What do you think? DO you like the idea? Is it passe? Is there room for exponential growth? We are in an incredible period of growth right now – why sit on the sidelines?!
So jump in. Fasten your seat belt. And join the crazy fun that is this ever-changing world we live in!