There’s a certain advantage to being ahead of the curve. In an age of constant disruption, the benefits of learning about a new tool or technology before your competitors can be immeasurable. So how do you stay aware of new trends and developments in your field or industry? Below are 5 convenient ways. They just take a minute to set up.
Yes, it’s 2016. Yes, newsletters are one of the best ways to stay up to date on trends. Browse for great newsletters on NewsletterStash or Revue. If you’re using Gmail, you can add a +tag behind your name in your email address, so that incoming newsletters all get tagged the same way. Like so:
firstname.lastname@example.org. This helps you filter them into separate folders so they don’t clutter up your inbox. It’s called subaddressing and many email providers besides Gmail support it too.
For every topic you can think of, there’s a Facebook community. Members share relevant links relating to the topic and you may find the discussions useful too. Also, it can be a good way to connect to other professionals in your domain.
Like Facebook, Reddit has a ‘subreddit’ for all kinds of topics, like privacy, transhumanism, freediving, the list goes on. Search for some interesting ones, subscribe to them, unsubscribe from the default ones, and return to Reddit regularly. You now have a curated page with links and discussions relevant to your interests.
You probably already know the name of some thought leaders and interesting publications or blogs in your domain. Follow them on Twitter. See who they retweet. Follow them if relevant. See what recommendations you get to follow accounts. Soon you’ll have a constant flow of, more or less, relevant content.
You can also build lists of people who’ve posted tweets with a specific hashtag. Lists are a useful way to build more tailored streams.
You might even get to know more about the people you follow, where they get their information from, and perhaps discover a new newsletter, Facebook group or subreddit. Don’t forget about the unfollow button when someone keeps cluttering your feed.
Ever busy with your hands, but not that busy with your mind? Amazon’s audiobook service, Audible, offers audiobooks on every topic. It recently also incorporated podcasts in its app, so you can learn while you cook, workout, cycle, or shower. For a $15/mo membership, you get 1 free audiobook a month. You can actually try Audible for free and get two free audiobooks.
Here are some top notch audiobooks about the future and how to study it:
- The Next 100 Years by George Friedman
- Superforecasting: The Art and Science of Prediction by Philip Tetlock & Dan Gardner
- Who Owns the Future? by Jaron Lanier
- The Second Machine Age by Erik Brynjolfsson & Andrew McAfee
Got more? Ping me on Twitter.
Now that you’re all set up, why not learn how to efficiently share what you know on social media?
Disclaimer: yes, those are affiliate links. They help me keep the blog and newsletter running.