Respecting the past is not, unfortunately the ‘in’ thing in a world where lessons learnt are not so much disregarded as dismissed.
During my scholarly days I was taught to respect the past because once it was all that was humanly possible. Learning by other’s mistakes was, they said, smarter than re-inventing the wheel. Reflection is good for you they told us and we believed – unquestionable belief; naive, inexperienced and trusting.
It was a rude awakening for those of us in advertising and marketing when years later we were to find ourselves buried in the beliefs of yesterday as computers buried type houses, bromide machines, light boxes and ‘Cow’ glue. And if none of this is familiar to you, seek out the veterans and they’ll tell you a tale or two… or three.
Progressive as we believed we were, we were totally unprepared for a new dimension. Reflecting caused us to live in the past and we were at war with the future. Today, I now believe my younger agency colleagues have got it right – it’s a brand new day; exciting, dynamic and forgetting the past is no bad thing.
It is with this reflective realisation that I now understand what all businesses need to understand. We live in a nano second world, where long term plans can be summed up in minutes rather than years. We are no longer looking at what customers need or want, we’re excavating what’s possible and creating products which expose problems before the punter knows they have them – let’s face it, who knew we needed a hi res video camera in a phone? Only Jobs!
Modern organisations aren’t surveying for what we need any longer, driven by the young professionals we are venturing into what’s possible not what’s required: the unknown unknowns, not the known unknowns. If this is all too much for you, spend sometime with a two year old and an iPad, you’ll soon discover the fate of the past.
Businesses are feeling the pinch, they can’t keep up, everywhere things are changing and not slowly. Enter Jibo – a social robot for the home. Jibo is a friendly robot that uses facial recognition and natural language processing to offer personal assistance in the home, and perhaps become a new member of the family. Futuristic? You think so? You can order Jibo right now for delivery in 2016. If you want to check out where we are going, instead of where we’ve come from, go HERE and be blown away!
Some of my young colleagues think it’s spooky, but my reflective experience tells me it’s yet another beginning and I love it. So only those who reflectively embrace the future will survive and my not so favourite people will be the first victims of the future. I speak of course of those high and mighty creatures who rule our very being – the politicians. Too slow, too late and too blind, you won’t know what hit you. You see you can make us wait, you can make our businesses wait, but you can’t stop technology, it simply doesn’t vote and you can’t argue with it.
Yes, I remember yesterday and it was pretty nice, but tomorrow is another thing and unless you put your arms around it and passionately hug it, you like our beloved politicians will stand bewildered by the might of what we have created. Reflect on that!