A colleague invites me to a meeting. The featured speaker's topic sounds interesting. Though I tell myself I can't afford time out of the office, I agree to attend anyway. Once there, talking to people I've never met before proves to be very pleasant. I make a contact or two. The speaker's presentation opens up my mind to new ideas. I'm reminded, as well, of things I used to do that I let slip by the wayside.
Then, in the middle of the speaker's talk, I either solve a problem that's been bothering me or I come up with a new idea. The weird part is that whatever pops into my head has little or nothing to do with the speaker's subject matter.
This has happened to me so many times that it doesn't surprise me anymore. It does remind me, though, about the importance of salespeople, sales managers and sales executives taking off their headsets, leaving their territory, logging out of the CRM system or excusing themselves from endless meetings for a day or two.
The presentation or seminar one chooses doesn't necessarily, in my opinion, have to be strictly sales related. Time management, listening skills, or running a productive meeting, for instance, might be more valuable.
No matter the subject, we all need to meet new people, consider alternative opinions and listen to new ideas so we can come back to what we do -- with a renewed and refreshed sense of perspective.