>Inspiring Your Authentic Week

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Inspiring Your Authentic Week


The shape of things to come.

Posted: 17 Aug 2009 12:04 AM PDT

We have already bet our future on a technical fix.

There is a vague “green” vision that sees a return to a “simpler” life, but this is based on a very idealised vision of the past. The reality is that “self sufficiency” is not far removed from subsistence farming. And subsistence farming is a cripplingly hard way to live.

What climate change really threatens is our lifestyle and our population size. The planet and most species would, benefit enormously from our demise.

A return to subsistence farming wether intentional or enforced, would end our lifestyle anyway. It means back breaking physical labour, limited innovation, reduced social connections and a narrowing of world view.

For our society to flourish we need the opposite vision. We need to see the whole of humanity as a team, collaborating on the great project of learning how to live sustainably and peacefully.

Technology is key to achieving this.

One of the biggest challenges to peace and sustainability is communication. Partly the challenge is intercultural communication between cultures at vastly different levels. Partly the challenge is about language.

In Hitch Hikers Guide to The Galaxy, Douglas Adams imagined the “Babel Fish”. It was inserted into the ear and translated speech into brain waves so that anyone could understand anything in any language.

Internet translation software from Google and Yahoo/Alta Vista is already incredibly sophisticated, fast and free. It is not perfect, but it is certainly understandable. You can try it out on my home page at www.neilcrofts.com.

It is easy to imagine that the next level of this software will be a smart phone app that will translate phone calls from one language to another in near real time.

You speak into your phone as normal, speech recognition software works out what you are saying, translation software turns it into a different language and the receiver hears it in their native tongue a few seconds later. When the other speaker talks the same process will translate back into your preferred language.

We may initially find that we are phoning people while standing right in front of them when we are on holiday, but pretty soon this software will evolve into a hearing aid like device that will do the translation face to face too.

The initially clunky translation software will quickly evolve through “crowd sourcing”. As more and more people use the software, they will rapidly correct anomalies and interpretations of colloquialisms leading to better and better translation.

Once the language barrier can be overcome, it will be far easier to overcome the cultural obstacles. The key to this is education. When translation is virtually free, accurate and easy all the great culture of civilisations can be shared.

Education needs to, and is moving from the industrial/information based model we have today to a far more personalised model based on skills and confidence.

Technology already enables instant access to virtually all knowledge. So what is important for the future is to give the next generation the skills to access the information they need and the confidence and ability to use it wisely.

Again technology will play a huge role in this. www.amentorforeverychild.com is an example of an initiative that will use technology to empower children all of over the world to become confident contributors to society.

Part of the cultural transformation required to evolve to peaceful and sustainable society requires an end to exploitation of people and the environment.

Exploitation was the fuel of the industrial age. The industrial model of education is designed for exploitation. Once the basic learning stage (literacy and numeracy) is over, it’s focus is to teach obedience and conformity.

Obedience is what makes people suitable factory and battlefield and cult fodder. For the next phase we need people to be brilliant, creative, caring and confident in themselves – not obedient. We need people to know who they are and to be it, without fear or compromise in all situations. We need people to be authentic.

One of the concerns that industrial age thinking has over truly educating people to be confident is “who will then do the shit jobs”?

The answer is either they won’t happen any longer (like fighting in trenches) or robots. Already the military are making increasing use of robots to do dangerous jobs. Military innovation has a habit of being game changing when technology developed with effectively unlimited R&D budgets finds it’s way into civilian life.

Robots that are both autonomous and remote controlled will increasingly take on the dull and unpleasant tasks and people will be freed up to learn and be creative. You can already buy domestic robots to do the vacuuming and to mow the lawn. Increasingly robotic factories and agricultural machinery will change the nature of labour.

To ensure this liberation results in peace and sustainability rather than conflict and degradation we also have to follow through with excellent education and renewable energy.

It is our choice and we make it every day when we turn on the lights, buy anything or interact with anyone?

What do you choose?

If you want some help in adapting your business to the future give me a call.

These messages are now available as a Podcast. This means you can download and listen to these messages on your iPod or iPhone. You can subscribe for free at www.neilcrofts.com

Also available for free at www.neilcrofts.com is a audio visual slideshow of my “10 Leadership Lessons from the Tour de France” message from a couple of weeks ago. If you want to use this with a group, let me know and I can supply a higher resolution version.

With love

nx

Neil Crofts
Neil Crofts
authentic business

+44 (0)7775 658534
neil@neilcrofts.com
www.neilcrofts.com
Skype – neilcrofts

This posting includes an audio/video/photo media file: Download Now

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About Neil Crofts

Writer, coach and consultant on authentic business and authentic leadership. Neil has inspired and motivated hundreds organisations and thousands of individuals to their highest potential. Neil has written three published books and numerous e-books. Neil is a coach, facilitator and consultant helping people and businesses find their authentic purpose and use it to inspire and motivate them to be everything that they can be. Neil has raced cars, been self-employed, run a company and sold it, been employed by large companies, experienced growth and contraction at the heart of the dotcom boom, tried changing companies from the inside and from the outside as European Head of Strategy at internet consultancy/rock band Razorfish. Neil has been independent for over 10 years and delivered his Authentic Leadership message to a diverse range of business audiences including people at BP, Shell, Microsoft, Kraft Foods, MSN, Jamie Oliver, South Gloucestershire Council, National Blood Transfusion Service, KaosPilots Business School, Fashion company By Malene Birger, German technology company Eleven.
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