Now you’ve set up online and offline methods to monitor developments in the business world, it’s time to review the information you’ve gathered.
Setting up the daily or weekly professional feeds we explored in the last chapter will make this easier, but be sure to actually absorb the information you gather.
Do more than just read about the topics that interest you. You should also apply the knowledge, ideas, and methods you learn in everyday professional situations as soon as possible so you:
Remember what you’ve learned,
Become confident using new methods/techniques.
Don’t be afraid to try new things, even if it means starting small.
For example, if you’re worried that a new initiative you’re trying to set up might be a flop, try introducing it in small steps.
Test the system once a week and see what happens. How do your colleagues react? What effect does it have on your work output? Then use that information to make whatever adjustments are necessary.
When you’ve successfully adopted a new practice that you’ve tested gradually over time, you can move on to the next innovative practice you’d like to develop.
Use these small steps to see what works well, and then discard what doesn’t.
Move from amateur to specialist
Gradually, your work environment and learning techniques will be revolutionized. You’ll also develop important skills that will be invaluable in the future:
The ability to learn quickly
Working openly and collaboratively can reassure your colleagues about the reasons behind your new ideas. There are two ways to do this:
Share what you’ve learned
However, before reaching out to work colleagues, start by sharing what you’ve learned online.
You can use the online network you set up to share anything from a news story or research paper to a YouTube video or podcast. Post consistently and you’ll also begin to gain online visibility as others comment, re-tweet, or share your content.
Once you’ve achieved this, you’ll have the knowledge, tone, and confidence to start sharing what you’ve learned with others in your working environment.
‘Sharing is good, and with digital technology sharing is easy’ Richard Stallman, free software movement activist
Become an expert
If you’re passionate about innovation, it’s most likely because you’re someone who welcomes change and would like to see it in your work environment and in your industry. So take your sharing to the next level by establishing yourself as an expert. There are a few ways you can do this with the use of technology.
Create a blog and you’ll have your very own outlet to share information. Choose from thousands of free templates, and most of the blogging platforms are now also extremely user-friendly. Here are just a few of the commercial content management systems available.
Vlogs are another alternative and can be a more entertaining way to engage with and share your expertise. If this feels like a better fit, check out the eight golden rules to becoming a vlogger and how to blog like a pro.
Remember, knowledge is power. It’s transferred from individual to individual, constantly reaching more and more people every time it’s shared.
Technology allows us to do this exponentially and build a professional profile at the same time. So always aim to share what you know through whatever medium feels comfortable.
Take your time, test out new tools and practices regularly, and reflect on their effectiveness.
Share your findings with your colleagues.
Once you have gained enough experience with an innovative practice or technology, share your expertise with a wider network.
Well done! You’ve reached the end of this course!
You’re now better equipped to master the constantly evolving technologies in our modern working lives and learned how to stay on top of the new developments in your field.
Be sure to complete the quiz and activity that follow, which will help you carry out the skills gap analysis we covered earlier to identify your professional needs.