The Power of Disconnecting: Finding New Energy for Business

Isn’t it interesting that we turn the internet to find methods to cope with digital distractions?

The web has an odd way of warping our perception of the world. It’s an immense resource for discovering information yet leads to a paradigm in influence. There’s always a sense of “more” so we find ourselves consuming as much as possible yet taking very little action.

In business… this isn’t good.

I’ve known far too many types that want to ride the next trending waves. The types that are so focused on the next big thing that they’ve neglected the fundamentals. Fundamentals like improving their customer service, online experience, and user experience.

Sometimes you need a disconnect.

Get away from the influence of all that you consume through the online sphere. A way to let your mind wander to new areas. Areas which improve your business. I mean, if Bill Gates is taking a break just to read books and disconnect then it has to be effective, right?

I’ve found that taking time away from the always-on connectivity of the web to be one of the best ways to spark creativity. You’re able to reduce the friction caused by online influence. You get back to the core.

How?

I’d begin by going completely off the grid. As in camping. Camping where you’re not checking your phone the moment it dings. Leaving the laptop behind. Letting the employees handle the business. Really letting the managers do their thing without stepping in to micromanage.

There’s something special about being connected with nature. Being able to let go. Coming back to society with that newfound energy and ideas. In some ways — using the experience as a staple in how you’ll interact with customers.

Suppose you’re camping.

This places you in a situation where you have to live off the items you bring. You’re against the odds. You either handle the situation on your own or connect with others surrounding the camp.

Sound familiar?

Conferences and other business-related events are kind of the same thing, when you think about it.

These scenarios have you setting up shop, usually through a booth or the use of an inflatable tent, and weathering out the “storm” that is the business interactions. Those spending time at these events increase their odds of networking and building joint venture opportunities. It’s playing the numbers — in a long enough timeline, the individuals hanging around will increase their exposure.

The next is embracing boredom.

There’s a lot to manage in business. Some champion the fact they’re workaholics. Those that gloat on their lack of sleep and hours clocked. These people usually do not make the big moves. They’re busy.

When you’re constantly wired — you’ll jump on anything that draws interest. Sometimes riding a trend works but often it’s a failed promise. My suggestion? Get bored. When you cut off distractions and force yourself to sit and be mindful you’ll run ideas a thousand times.

Removal of these gut reactions places your business decisions toward those based on data. You’re able to examine problems needed to be solved and choose a path that aligns with business philosophy rather than playing into an over-marketed, hyped-up trend.

Finally, I’d recommend getting out into the wild.

It’s easy to create a bubble. One where we believe every idea presented by internal culture is one which is best for the company. These sometimes hit —  but sometimes they’re a PR disaster. The influence we experience from our online usage is often far removed from the real-world.

Getting out into the wild means reconnecting with your everyday customer. Seeing the world through their eyes. Receiving intimate feedback. It’s about using the apps and services customers likely use to discover the brands. Experience the products. Explore the services. And connect.

This doesn’t happen when you’re removed from the environment. You need to get into the mix of it all. Go back to your roots. Explore the space with the casuals.

We all need a disconnect. I recommend it.