Archive for August, 2015

Reinvention As A Life Skill

August 18th, 2015


Ask any group of people if they’re doing today what they thought they would be doing when they started out. I begin every speech that way. Occasional a few people in the audience raise their hand, very few. Almost everyone will readily admit that they have had to reinvent themselves multiple times over their lives and careers. And yet if you ask them how they did it or if formal education prepared them for reinvention you get mostly blank stares. You hear answers like, I just did it because I had to. Most seem unable to share useful knowledge on how they reinvented themselves. If anything is clear about the 21st century it’s that change happens faster than it used to. Reinvention isn’t something to be done only as a last resort. It’s something we need to do all the time in order to stay relevant in a rapidly changing world. We have to make personal reinvention safer and easier to manage. Reinvention has become an important life skill.

If we wait until we have no choice but to reinvent ourselves it’s too late. It’s sad beyond words to see how many people and families have been devastated by the latest economic downturn. Politicians may take credit as the unemployment rate improves but we know better. Good high wage jobs with career ladders are few and far between. People not seeking work and the underemployed aren’t counted in the unemployment rate and their numbers are growing. The gap between the skills of our workforce and the needs of a new economy are also growing. If we wait for our political and institutional leaders to act we will be waiting a long time. If we wait for things to return to the way they used to be, we will be waiting forever. Everything about our current economy screams for making personal reinvention more of a natural act. Read more

Welcome To #BIF2015!

August 12th, 2015



Maybe I’m just getting old, but the self-imposed pressure to get better faster, and to rise to the occasion of the enormous social system challenges we all face, has never been more acute. I feel a heightened sense of urgency.

I don’t know about you, but #BIF2015 comes at the perfect time for me. I need the annual fix of connection and inspiration I get from hanging out at our BIF Collaborative Innovation Summit with you — the BIF community of like-minded innovation junkies from around the world. I’m betting you can use an inspiration fix too!

I never know what collisions, patterns, and stories will most move and inspire me in advance of each summit. I do know that each and every Summit has surprised me in unique ways. I look forward to the two days of the Summit every year. I’m grateful and blessed to spend them colliding with you. Bring on the random collisions of unusual suspects and let the inspiration begin! Read more