Trade shows and visits abroad
Thank goodness for diversity. Different regions and cultures have their own ways of solving problems. Its amazing that even in this super connected age, these solutions often times don't make it out of the country of origin. Getting out of your comfort zone brings lots of opportunity to view issues and possible solutions in a whole new way. Below are a few slides from a recent trip to Hong Kong, China, and Japan.
Websites and newsletters
Wanting to learn about new cutting edge stuff isn't always that hard. In fact most of the time people will just send it to your inbox. Taking time to study and knowing when to apply is the tricky part. Below is a list of websites that have found particularly useful during my career.
Go buy Odd stuff
Japan is a country full of wonderful new inventions and products that often times are not marketed outside of Japan. We went on a shopping spree and sent back many boxes of intriguing products not seen here in the US. Sometimes innovating simply means being first to market.