A talk by an expert is often a good way of gaining new knowledge, such as information about recent research, very quickly. They are also usually good for meeting people. In fact, I think attending talks are so useful, potentially, that I'd even recommend going in your own time if you find out about one running in an evening or at the weekend.
To help promote innovation, I think it's a good thing to attend talks outside your own specialist area. Learning about the challenges faced in other disciplines, and how they were solved, can be instrumental in the cross-fertilisation of ideas.
However, you have to be strategic in deciding which talks to attend.
Terry Freedman is an independent ed tech consultant and freelance writer based in London, England. He publishes the ICT & Computing in Education website.