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What you don’t know could be holding you back

The March children’s wear shows promise to be turnt up. Amirite? Not sure? No idea what I’m talking about? Unless you’ve got young adults at home, you’d have no reason to. I’m literally speaking another language. One you may not have even known existed. But this begs the question: if you didn’t know about that term, what else don’t you know? And, how might you and your business be suffering from this lack of knowledge?

Of course knowing the latest slang doesn’t help me in my business. (Though if I ran a tween brand, it might be essential.) It’s just an unexpected benefit of spending lots of time around younger people. The most valuable part of hanging out with my interns and my students is the way they keep me connected to what’s happening next, especially in terms of pop culture and social media. Those things absolutely have business benefits. Thanks to them, I know which Hollywood starlets stay on fleek and the SnapChat accounts that promise to help me get my life.

And the kids aren’t the only ones I learn from. My seasoned colleagues at Parsons and LIM College keep me sharp in different ways. I can say that thanks to what I’ve gleaned from them—directly and indirectly—I’m a better teacher than when I started four years ago. And while what they have to offer is directly applicable to education, it’s also valuable in consulting. Since I’m often called upon to enlighten my clients on various aspects of the kids’ industry, understanding how people learn and the tools to use when teaching them comes in handy.

And even beyond these regular interactions, I try to seek out new experiences. That’s what prompted me to brave the wicked winds and freezing temps recently to attend a series of events put on by Youtube. While I don’t have plans to create a video channel anytime soon, much of what the team shared was universal to anyone creating content, whether it’s for a store’s blog or a brand’s social media feed. Handy lessons and refreshers, indeed.

So while having my fingers in many different things can sometimes feel like I’m pulled in a lot of directions, there are definite rewards to interacting with different types of people who have a wide range of interests and skills. It means I’m constantly learning about things I didn’t know existed before.

So now it’s your turn to spill the tea. Who in your business and personal community clues you in on valuable information that you wouldn’t have known existed otherwise?

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