I’m here at the PCMA Education Conference in San Antonio. Little did I realize that it is just a quick walk from our hotel, the Marriott San Antonio Rivercenter. Like many tourists who come upon the No.1–visited State Shrine in Texas for the first time, I was a little surprised by the site’s scale. It looms so large in our American consciousness that the actual place — in the heart of a bustling downtown — seems much smaller than I imagined.
I thought about that when “Practical Futurist” Michael Rogers (see our interview with him in the May issue) spoke at this morning’s general session. Staying on top of the latest technologies and figuring out how to implement them to benefit our industry seems overwhelming, given our growing day-to-day tasks. (As a former colleague used to say, “It’s hard to build the house when you’re washing the windows.”) Rogers acknowledged that operational duties trump research and development — but R&D is critical to innovation. He recommended that you designate someone within your organization be removed (perhaps on a regular basis) from the operational side of things to talk to people and search the web — to do the actual work of seeking out and understanding new tools and technologies.
Designating someone to focus on that on a regular basis feels doable. And for me, something that I imagined to be such a huge thing seemed to shrink down to a manageable scale.