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At Work

Innovation lessons from Sloss Tech, the Southeast’s premier tech conference

Since 2016, Sloss Tech, known as the Southeast’s premier tech conference, has brought together the best and brightest of today’s tech entrepreneurs from Birmingham and beyond for an event where founders, startups and companies can share ideas, build relationships and push the boundaries of innovation. The 2019 keynote speaker was Reddit co-founder Alexis Ohanian, and past speakers include Uber’s Chief Brand Officer Bozoma Saint John, Google Senior Interaction Designer Charles Berg and others.

Members from Protective’s IT, Digital and Innovation and Marketing teams had the opportunity to attend this year’s event. Topics included emerging tech such as AI, robotics, blockchain and autonomous vehicles, as well as panels on women in tech, startups, and rapid development and data analytics.

After a full day of discussion and ideas, the Protective team says the following four points resonated most:

1. A brand-new idea is not always about something brand new. Instead, it might be about a new way of doing.

Airbnb and Uber are examples of companies that did not necessarily do anything new. Instead, they simply saw a service, created a new way of offering it and became brokers for connecting people through technology.

2. The business world is a giant game of chess.

The business ecosystem has a vast number of moving pieces, and they’re all complex. One must not only think at a different level, but also stay 10 moves ahead to be competitive in today’s environment.

3. Work-life balance is crucial. 

What are you doing to find that balance? You can start by implementing small changes, like an exercise regimen, meditation or unplugging your electronics. Make it a point to identify when work is necessary and when it is OK to physically and mentally clock out. Read more about work-life balance.

4. Get out of the box. Take a healthy risk.

Whether at work or in your personal life, there are benefits to stepping outside your comfort zone. Indoor rock climbing, enjoying an amusement park, meeting new people – these kinds of activities have the potential to positively impact one’s personal and professional development

Looking for ways to be more forward-thinking at work? Check out these four ways to be more innovative.



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