Staying on top of the news can be intimidating. The Washington Post alone publishes an average of 1,200 stories, graphics and videos per day and the New York Times posts 300 times daily. Keeping up is a challenge in any industry, especially in the fast-paced world of tech, but staying in the loop is essential to maintaining a competitive edge. Here’s how to stay informed without spending all day at it.

  1. Monitor your email, not the entire Web. The great thing about newsletters is that someone else has already done the heavy lifting of vetting and summarizing. Look for tailored news roundups and daily or weekly newsletters and subscribe to those that fit your industry. Dig deeper when necessary. If you like a bit of sarcasm and wit to start your morning, an office favorite for us is The Skimm.
  2. Subscribe to relevant keywords through Google Alerts. Get notified as specific stories break by setting tailored Google alerts for keywords, industry terms, people and companies important to you. You’ll know what is being said about your employer, clients and competitors.
  3. Follow editors and relevant beat reporters on Twitter. The key players on social media can keep you in the loop with minimal effort. Many reporters post breaking news as it happens, you stay informed just by scrolling through your newsfeed.
  4. Bookmark your favorite blogs. Set aside an hour a week to look through targeted newsrooms and company blogs for official announcements in your industry. In today’s cyber culture there’s always a new blog popping up. Keep tabs on new thought leaders.
  5. Maximize your drive time. Subscribe to industry podcasts. They’ll automatically appear on your smart phone, available to listen to anytime you are. The Tim Ferriss Show is an excellent tech podcast with a focus on the startup scene. A good choice for the healthcare industry is Tech Tonics. We also love CXYZ, by our clients TaskUS co-founders Bryce Maddock and Jaspar Weir, which explores the world of customer experience (CX) with top tech executives and industry leaders. There’s a new one every Tuesday.

Regardless of how you do it, stay up on industry news. Trends develop quickly, and no leader wants to be left behind. Nothing hurts a reputation more, when the topic turns to new developments, than a blank look and “Huh, interesting.” Leaders who keep up become talkers, not listeners.

Try our tips and let us know which ones work best for you. If you need some help, tweet us @OWCPR.