I spent a few days last week at the Green Industry Great Escape, PLANET’s revamped Executive Forum meeting. The idea was to get top industry leaders out of their offices and away at a nice location so they could network and think about the future of their businesses.
By all accounts, it worked. Whether it’s at big events organized by an association, a peer group or just you heading off to be alone for a day or two, any business owner has to spend some of his or her time focused on developing new ideas and planning for the future.
So what does this have to do with index cards? I have three small kids, and I don’t get a lot of time to spend by myself (except on planes), so I have to catch any ideas as they flit through my brain on the go. To do that, I use this low-tech PDA. It’s just index cards and a butterfly clip. It fits in my shirt pocket, and when paired with a pen, it’s the perfect way for me to brainstorm plans, capture a quick to-do list or outline my schedule for the day.
You can do this with anything – a legal pad, your phone or any number of web applications. But the important thing is that you do it. You have to capture these ideas in one place, so you can find them again, think about them and develop them into concrete plans for the future.
Otherwise, you just spent a bunch of money and a few days on the beach to end up in the same place you were last year.