In a world filled with uncertainty, you have to ask what you are certain about. The number one thing I’m certain about is that the future is all about relationships. If you want a positive future, then you need to have positive relationships with your employees and customers. And if you want positive relationships, you have to focus on the glue that holds a positive relationship together. What is that glue? It’s trust, which you earn through your values, such as honesty, integrity, delivering on promises, and so on.
Daniel Burrus' Strategic Insights Blog
Wouldn’t it be great if you could predict the future—and be right? If you could conceptualize the next great innovative product and know it will be a wild success before you even make your prototype? If you could roll out the next innovative service or process without fear of it failing?
Well, you can predict the future accurately and be a great innovator. All you have to do is leave out the parts you could be wrong about.
Since the dawn of human kind the business landscape was a man’s world. Times are changing! Today, women are wielding more and more power on both sides of the business transaction. First, let’s look at some facts from the consumer side. In family purchases that involve two adults (a woman and a man) women make:
Currently, passwords are total chaos. In fact, most people have terrible passwords that are easy for hackers to guess. Even worse, many people use the same password for all their accounts, and they haven’t changed their password for years. So all a hacker has to do is guess the password once and they’ll have access to the user’s entire life. And while we were all advised to change our passwords after the recent Heartbleed attack, very few of us actually did.
Executives, managers, the business and popular press all tend to make the same false assumption about the future of technological change. Every time a new product category is introduced, they assume that the older category will soon cease to exist.
But that’s not the way it works. The hottest new breakthrough technologies do not necessarily replace older ones. Instead, they often coexist side by side because the old technology has its own unique profile of functional strengths that the new technology never fully replaces.
I’ve always asserted that the future really is visible—that you can predict events before they occur. When I’m delivering a keynote speech, I often say that the reason I have been so accurate about my predictions all these decades is because I leave out the parts I can be wrong about. It sounds simple, but it is also powerful when you realize how much you can be right about. The key was developing a methodology of separating what I call Hard Trends, trends that will happen, from Soft Trends, trends that might happen. It was sticking to that methodology that yielded a great track record of accuracy.
Graduation is the prime time to think about your future—about the things you want to accomplish and the kind of person you want to become. After reflecting back to when I was 22, here are a few things I have learned over the years that would have helped me then, and might help you now.
As you make your future plans, many people will tell you to “think big.” Well, I want to tell you that however “big” you’re thinking right now, it’s probably too small.
One thing I’ve learned over the years is that when you are thinking big, in reality you’re thinking small. There’s always a bigger big.
Every piece of technology we own or online service we consume has Gordon Moore’s 1965 law as a common denominator (Moore’s Law = number of transistors doubling in microchips about every two years). Even though the law is nearly half a century old, it’s still valid and impacting our future.
As a technology futurist and innovation expert, I’m often asked, “Which technologies do you think will have the biggest impact on humankind over the next decade?”
When answering this question, it’s important to note that many things will not change in the future, including basic human behavior and a host of things like our desire to walk on a beach, take vacations, play games, see our children smile, and many more. But, many things about our life will be literally transformed, way beyond the early days of smart phones, mobile apps, and the cloud we are experiencing today.
For example, we are in the early stages of a mobile, social, virtual, and visual revolution that will transform how we live, work, and play. It is an evolutionary revolution since all disruptive technologies that have already impacted us were there to see ahead of time. Thanks to what I call the Three Digital Accelerators of processing power, digital storage, and digital bandwidth, the disruptive technologies have been evolving exponentially at a measurable clip for decades. And, thanks to the power of exponential change, they have moved into the revolutionary phase.
The old Golden Rule in business was to find out what your customers wanted and to give it to them. Today, if you ask your customers what they want and you give it to them, you’d miss a huge opportunity. Their answers will never give you more than a fraction of the true potential. In addition, the answers they provide are the same answers they are telling your competitors when they ask. In other words, you and your competitors will take your customers’ answers and develop similar solutions that will result in high competition with low margins.