Imagine a world without a smartphone, an electric car (or one that drives itself), Skype or Facebook. Each of these is a part of our world now, and shifting the way we think and work.

In most fields, people are quick to follow the tenet of best practices. Rather than take a “from-scratch” approach to finding a solution, we look immediately for what’s been done and had good results, and follow that recipe.

The issue with not reinventing the wheel is that there’s a chance you’re missing out on an even-better-than-current-best practice. With creativity, technology and so many other tools changing at a rapid pace, what made sense and served you well even three months ago might now result in missed opportunities and a stronger product.

At Perfect PlanIt, we’ve developed a variety of tools for planning events, creating sales presentations and designing targeted marketing pieces. Budget calculators, project management timelines, status report outlines, starter templates … these all help reduce startup time. But the real magic happens when we stop and read a marketing communications plan with a fresh eye, brainstorm new offerings for an exhibitor prospectus or test an animation style for an infographic.

Breaking out of the tried-and-true rut also means directing the attention back to the target audience or end-user. We get so close to what we do and do certain tasks so frequently that we sometimes forget that this is very new and different to the person experiencing the presentation, reading the website or attending the event. Take a walk in their shoes and if the best practice way no longer rings true, create an alternative. Research what others are doing and ask yourself, “yeah, but what if…” Look for new tools and technologies. Sleep on it and then review. Take a class or attend a webinar to open your mind to a different way of processing information.

Time and budget constraints don’t always allow for an in-depth reinvention. But at key moments, shaking things up and trying something new is a definite best practice.