MAR-APR 2018

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INTECH MARCH/APRIL 2018 35 SPECIAL SECTION ecosystem resources include the web- site, InTech magazine,, books, standards, technical papers, webinars, ISA Inter - change, training, and events. The most impor- tant part of the ISA ecosystem is ISA members who have a wealth of knowledge and experience. ISA conferences and symposiums are a great example of bringing people together around topics that create focused ecosystems. ISA con- ferences and symposiums include the ISA Anal- ysis Division Symposium (AD), Foundations of Alarm Management, ISA LDAR Fugitive Emis- sions Symposium, International Instrumenta- tion Symposium (IIS), ISA POWID-EPRI Sympo- sium, and ISA Water/Wastewater and Automatic Controls Symposium. Symposiums and other events have great content value, but the interactions among people who share the same interests, challeng- es, and problems also bring an abundance of knowledge. I believe there is great value at these events where people interact formally and in- formally in conversations, creating lasting con- nections, and, in many cases, long-term friend- ships. In Judith E. Glaser's book, Conversational Intelligence, she talks about how conversations actually rewire our DNA and brain chemistry for mutual success. Over the years, these personal connections from events become your own specialized ecosystem of people with common interests and a storehouse of knowledge. In my experience, asking people in my ecosystem for ideas and thoughts proved invaluable for solv- ing automation control problems and improv- ing operations. Today, it is much easier to con- tinually stay in touch and share with people you have met using email and the ISA LinkedIn group, which has more than 45,000 members. Young and experienced benefit Whether you are a young per- son just entering the workforce, new to the industry, or an expe- rienced veteran, the ISA ecosys- tem can help you navigate industrial automation challenges and new technology. ISA continues to create opportunities for a younger generation of bright new minds to grow and meet the chal- lenges of the future. ISA members and leadership continue to make decisions based on our fu ture— not what we have done in the past. We cannot constrain ourselves to our past behavior and practices. Attracting new and younger leaders to the Society is important, because they bring new thinking and fresh perspectives that in an open environment, when combined with experi- enced leaders, create a much stronger organi- zation and more value. Diversity of thought The automation in- dustry is faced with rapid change and challenges, and the diversity of ISA members throughout industry is a great resource of experience, ideas, and know-how to deal with these changes in the automation industry. The broader ISA ecosystem outside of your organization is important for protect- ing against the dangers of a company becom- ing inwardly focused and not changing with the times. Companies that are completely inwardly focused run the risk of missing new opportuni- ties for improvements and being blindsided by changes in the external reality. Focused on the future Clearly, ISA is an organization that is proud of its past but is firmly focused on the future. In set- ting the standard for automation and control, we are determined to constantly raise the bar. Evidence of new Society growth and new op- portunities for all of us to learn, participate, and help shape the future of our profession and in- dustry are all around us. The world of the auto- mation professional is changing daily, affected by evolving and emerging new technologies and solutions that need to be applied in creative new ways. ISA is committed to adapt- ing in this changing environment. The roots of ISA are in the pro- cess industries, mainly petro- chemical, pharmaceutical, and food and beverage. This is an im- portant strength, and now other industry sectors are recognizing they benefit from leveraging and applying our expertise. There are many opportunities to make our intellectual property (IP) available ISA continues to create opportunities for a younger generation of bright new minds to grow and meet the challenges of the future. FAST FORWARD l ISA gives automation professionals opportu- nities to learn more and develop their careers. l It takes committed and passionate members in a network of peers to apply their talents and knowledge to assist others. l You can get involved by being an ISA volunteer, contributing to the automation profession and your own development.

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