3 Things I Learned from My Time at Keypoint Intelligence
Print is huge, mistakes don’t define you, and benefits matter
With mixed emotions, I will soon be leaving my position as Consulting Editor at Keypoint Intelligence for a new opportunity outside of the print and technology industry. Before I depart, I wanted to share three lessons I have learned from my 10 years with the company.
|Throwback picture from my first year at InfoTrends
(now Keypoint Intelligence) at our Halloween potluck
in Weymouth, Massachusetts.
Print Is a Multi-Faceted Space
When I started as a Research Analyst at InfoTrends, a former version of Keypoint Intelligence, I hadn’t thought much about print or document technology. I had worked for various newspapers and handled plenty of files, but it was this job that got me thinking about print’s role in our lives.
I came to realize that print:
- Is a long-lasting technology (does anyone else watch Bridgerton?) because of its many benefits
- Is a huge part of the economy, fueling hardware, supply, software, service, and channel companies that are selling into homes, businesses, and print shops
- Is working to reinvent itself in the face of technological advancements in areas like mobile, cloud, sustainability, artificial intelligence, and e-commerce
This multidimensional aspect of print has made it a fun topic to conduct research on and write about over the last decade. It’s interesting to think about how some areas of print, like mobile printing, have become less of a focus (probably because they are now inherently part of our workflows), while others—like sustainability and information security—have taken on greater relevance.
Learn from Your Mistakes
About three and a half years ago, I made a huge work mistake. I’ve never written publicly about it, but I confessed the story to friends and family (and made quite a few apologies to colleagues). I was en route to Japan for our company’s annual office technology conference (my first trip there!), when I looked at my passport. I realized it was the old version of the document, with my maiden name on it.
It hadn’t expired, however, and the misnomer hadn’t been an issue when using it as identification in US airports. Still, I had an uneasy feeling while on the airplane to Japan. And I was right to be concerned. Upon arriving in customs, authorities scanned my passport, told me it was invalid, and informed me I had to go right back home (content management system for passports, anyone?).
How embarrassed I was to share the news with my colleagues, who were waiting for me in the baggage claim area. I came home, ruminated over what happened, and I still long for a trip to Japan. But I did learn a few things from this experience, including the obvious “bring your correct passport”:
- The importance of how your colleagues treat you when you make a mistake (for example, my then-CEO sent me a heartfelt note telling me not to sweat it and that we all make career mistakes)
- The importance of making peace with your mistakes (I am now able to separate what I did from who I am)
- That when you are in a bad place in one area of your life, it can spill over into other areas (I had been facing fertility challenges, and think this was related to my oversight)
One of the greatest things about working for Keypoint Intelligence has been the benefits and flexibility. In addition to good benefits in the obvious areas, including healthcare and time off, I’ve been able to work from home full time for eight years now. Because the company allowed me to do this (before remote work was so widespread), I was able to move close to my dad after his ALS diagnosis. This was huge.
As if this wasn’t enough, I asked for more several years later. When my son was born in 2016, I asked if I could switch from working five days a week to four days. They allowed me to do this; it has been such a blessing. I was able to spend Wednesdays with my son; more recently, my daughter and I have had the day to explore playgrounds and libraries together.
I do feel that having Wednesdays off is a great break in the work week that makes you more productive the other days. While it’s not for everyone—and something that is the subject of much debate—I’d encourage more companies to explore the idea of a four-day workweek as a benefit.
There you have it. While I am leaving the company and print industry for a new challenge, I do hope that my industry contacts will keep in touch. I am reachable on LinkedIn, and always happy to share my positive experiences at Keypoint Intelligence.
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