Where are we? My niece once asked me when driving across town to visit a relative. I looked bemused. Didn’t I tell you we are going to see a family relative and it’s a 2 hours drive. Why is she asking where are we? I replied we are in Jupiter. We live through life and forget that we are traveling across ages. Life is fast and fast is life. We are experiencing an explosion of knowledge, technology, complex social challenges and weather climate change. There are more changes in this era than all the previous era combined (the stone age, machine age, industrial revolution, modern and post-modern). I am not sure what to call the present. There is no present anymore, it is the future.
The change we are talking about is not a new change, but this rate of change is speeding up. The world is changing at accelerated change. Transportation, telecommunications, housing, schooling, government, media, and enterprise…. everything is changing too soon. Can you picture what your current career was like in ten years ago, do you notice any changes? Now expect triple the changes in the next ten years. Are you ready for it or you are just there waiting for retirement? Unexpectedly, folks get laid-off while just waiting. In this new world order, you don’t sit there and just wait, even waiters and waitress have mobility. Nokia, the biggest telephone company in the world in the 90’s was caught off-guard by just waiting. They did nothing wrong but before countdown to sunrise they were out of business in the new millenium.
The current landscape is not about what, who, or where you know or have but how fast you can convert those knowledge, capabilities, ideas, influences, resources, connections into something real, felt and valuable. The market has no wait time for laggards. One of my personal mantra is “the world got no time to spoon feed roaches or fix spider a dinner”. As things go out of equilibrium and reset iteratively, you can bet that the only night and day, and 24 hours time clock is constant. If the world is changing at lightning speed, I am convinced that the future belongs to the fast. How can I be a fast-runner in this new global hemisphere of unprecedented change? First you have to;
Wake Up: In case you have been sleeping for too long, wake up. Only the woken can see the brightness of the day. If you are the merchant waiting for a miracle gold, here is the breaking news – stop waiting for a miracle babe. You are the miracle, if you do not happen, no miracle will happen. Sometimes we are faced with an insurmountable task, grueling challenge or stark uncertainty. What do you do? Recalibrate your navigation, and find another way into the market. Girdle up your loins, and face your world. Either we face it or fade with it, one is bound to happen. Get off your island of comfort and go deal with ingrained and emerging discomforts.
Be Ready: Are you ready to glide with your levitation wand and explore the goodies the world has to offer, get in. Ready or not, someone or something is always ready to bring you down. It is not gravity, it is life physics. Be ready to be discipline, be ready to be objective, be ready to distract your distractions, be ready to lead, be ready to fail, be ready to get back up, be ready for a fight and be ready to win.
Re-invent: You have to constantly re-invent oneself to be relevant in the modern world. Reinventing oneself is staying with the current and being relevant in the future. To stay on top of the game is not just being the top dawg but knowing the rule of the game, when game time and the stuff other players are made of. Do you what game is being played in your industry, business, family, company or community. Do not get stuck-up on an ancient ideology. To re-invent is to challenge oneself to do what needs to be done to be relevant in modern times.
Expect the Unexpected: Expect the unexpected but break your own records and do the impossible. That is the genotypic description of champions of the new era. For sure there will be chaotic moments and unbecoming situations, but you have to manage the situation to your advantage. Take steps for what you need and not what you want. Be wary of temporary gravitation that steals the hope of your tomorrow.
Do it: What are you waiting for? Except jumping off the bridge, any significant good you can do for yourself, please by all means JUMP in. There is no perfect time to start a perfect thing. Done is better than perfect. If you stagger in making good decision and follow up with it, you have already made one. Do the certifications now, write the book now, invest now, study now, network now, get fit now, upgrade now, decide now…. Just do it now. Act now or wait to be acted upon. If you are not at the dining table, check again, you might be part of the meal. Do not put off till tomorrow what you can do today.
Remember the future belongs to the fast. The future is ours to create. Go create yours