I’m going back to where it all started. Recently I confirmed a trip to Denver to conduct a training with the very organization that gave me my first opportunity in the longitudinal research world – the University of Colorado. My first assignment was to find almost 1000 drugs addicts from a study several years prior. This project had the biggest influence on my career.
I think it’s safe to say that I’m honored and excited. My stint with the U was almost 7 years so i kept in touch with many old co-workers. But this return trip will be different. I’ll not only get to train in the conference room. but I’ll get to train in the very neighborhoods and streets where I spent years looking for people. There is nothing like training in the real environment.
Some things will be the same. Some things will be completely different. It will take some adjustment. Because of gentrification, many urban areas are in transition. The regular copping spots (places where people buy and sell drugs) from back in the day are probably surrounded by boutiques now. It doesn’t mean the copping spots are gone. They just move. This is why training outside of the office is so crucial. Many of the strategies I talk about reflect patterns and nuances happening on the streets and in the neighborhoods.
Bottom line: Even though the landscape changes, the fundamentals don’t. Once you get acclimated, it’s time to apply the fundamentals and get in contact with your people again.
I’ll let you know how it goes. I can’t wait.