It’s a win-win.
You keep up on the latest trends, you learn best practices, you hear case studies, and you get to go on vacations that are tax deductible.
The last point is subtle – organizations will host events in nice places at nice times of the year, and you go to the event and learn a lot and have a great time too. If you stay a couple of extra days to get to know San Diego or Myrtle Beach, who would object?
Your boss or partner might, so you pay the extra night or two of hotel yourself. Personally I find Las Vegas entirely too distracting, but still, this is a lot of fun and good for your business too.
Aside from big conventions that various organizations might throw, they often have local events with speakers or a panel preceded and followed by networking opportunities.
This is a great way to find people who understand your issues and who may have solved them already and can share this with you.
These might be people you could possibly end up partnering with or competing against – in either case, part of your job is to keep your ear to the ground and learn, baby, learn.
If you are serious about your industry and you’ve been to a few events sponsored by your non-profit industry organization, you might want to consider getting involved in some way.
You might volunteer to help out with an event, you might host an event at your place of business or home, you might eventually seek to join the board to help run the organization.
You have to ease into this by getting to know the people involved and the mission of the group, but this can be a very effective way to learn more and more.
I’m telling you, building a culture of research can be very rewarding.
In the next piece I'll cover The Dreaded Public Speaking
About the author
Carlos E. Garcia, born to Mexican immigrant parents, grew up in East Los Angeles and attended Pomona College, UC Berkeley and National University (BA, MA and MBA respectively). He has over thirty years of experience in the field of US Hispanic consumer research, twenty one years at the helm of his own company, Garcia Research. Most recently SVP at GfK: Knowledge Networks, where he headed up their Hispanic research efforts. He's gone full circle and now back at the helm of Garcia Research, a Hispanic market and Multicultural-focused research firm.Website