Tidbits from Defrag


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I’ve been spending the last day at the Defrag Conference, which is basically two days of being surrounded by smart people discussing amazing things. If you’ve been following me on Twitter, you’ve been reading some of my takeaways from day one. If not, here are three tidbits from the first three keynotes:

Alex Wright, author of “glut” spoke about how the social web is much more like oral cultures than literate ones. This provided excellent validation of last week’s talk on “Slanguage” given at the Attensity Engage User Conference by Mark Schmelzenbach and Jessica Perri.

Vivek Wadhwa lamented the state of innovation in the US, and said just churning out more engineers won’t help. We need to cultivate a culture that values failure more than success. He also said this still exists in Silicon Valley, which is why Silicon Valley continues to innovate. (Personally, I find it difficult to embrace failure in a place with such high housing prices, but that might make me sound a little too much like Jimmy McMillan.)

Dan Portillo spoke on scaling technology company cultures, and how important it is to take care of your people so that they will want to stay with your company. I also believe that it’s important for people to be able to work at a company that they think is doing innovative work that really makes a difference. But, hey, I work at Attensity, so that’s obvious.

My biggest takeaway? Even in this world of social media and instant communication, it’s still vitally important to take time to actually meet with your peers and let yourself steep in thought. So pick up the phone and call a customer, or a colleague, or that interesting person you met at a conference last year. Nothing (not even when you’ve got the best text analytics software in the business!) can take the place of actually getting out there and talking with people every so often.

Republished with author's permission from original post.

Catherine van Zuylen
Catherine serves as Vice President of Product Marketing for Attensity. She brings more than 15 years of experience thriving on the passion and intensity of technology startups and rollups. Prior to Attensity, Catherine was VP of Marketing for the Block Shield family of companies, where she defined and implemented new positioning, product, and branding strategies in support of company restructuring and acquisition of technology assets.


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