James Lovelock: Gaia and the rise of hyperintelligence

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James Lovelock, the creator of the Gaia hypothesis, that the Earth is a holistic self-maintaining system, died last week. As a coincidence I read his last book, Novacene, over the weekend before I had heard the news.

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The subtle path of leadership from centralized to decentralized organizations and society

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One of the biggest, broadest shifts in place across human society is from centralized to decentralized organizations and structures.

Yet there is massive uncertainty about how far it will go. It is possible we are moving towards a world defined by Decentralized Autonomous Organizations (DAOs), participatory democracy, decentralized finance, and self sovereignty. It is also possible that existing institutions and hierarchical societies and organizations will dominate indefinitely.

What will determine the path forward is the quality of leadership in enabling a decentralized world

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Looking back at what Living Networks got right 20 years ago

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I began work as a professional futurist in 1998, and it has been my full-time avocation (other than entrepreneurial endeavors) since 2006. 

For many years my reputation and credibility as a futurist has been significantly supported by my 2002 book Living Networks, which anticipated many developments of the last two decades, including pointing to the rise of social networks and micro-messaging before any of today’s social platforms existed. 

That was not the only thing it got right. 

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Designing effective hybrid work: leveraging the 5 reasons for offices to exist

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As we emerge from the pandemic, in most countries office work is resuming at scale, meaning doing hybrid work well is a priority for every organization. This topic currently makes up a considerable portion of my client work.

Many workers and executives have learned to appreciate the many positives of remote work, yet for many reasons very few companies will dispense with offices, since they can play a valuable role in highly productive organizations.
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LinkedIn enters the freelancer service marketplace: the implications

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LinkedIn has today entered the service marketplace business. This is substantial news in the rapidly evolving work landscape.

Now anyone can use LinkedIn’s ‘Open to Work’ feature at the top of their profile to indicate availability to provide services, either local or remote, across 250 pre-defined categories (shortly expanding to 500), with for now no fees (or direct invoicing) for freelancers or clients. LinkedIn’s intention is to develop the feature substantially.
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Nancy White on powerful facilitation practices: self-awareness, don’t do it alone, experiment, commitment

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Facilitation is arguably the most valuable skill in the world. If you can help people to be collectively more intelligent, you unlock vast wealth. Facilitation can also be applied to individuals, in assisting them to apply their capabilities to achieve what they want.

‘Facilitate’ means to make easier. If you can ease the path to people working well together, beautiful things can happen.

A while ago on The Virtual Excellence Show I interviewed Nancy White, recognized by many as a master facilitator in both virtual and physical spaces for the last couple of decades.

Here is a segment of our broad-ranging conversation in which Nancy shares deep insights into developing facilitation skills. Recommended! Watch the video, or read the full transcript below.
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The future of customer experience: Spotify (and most products) need a serendipity dial

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Driven by frustration with the Spotify algorithm I have just posted an Idea Submission on the Spotify community website titled Introduce a serendipity dial. What I wrote is copied below, click on the link and vote it up if you like it!
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Innovation Strategy Cheat Sheet: a succinct guide to setting your innovation course

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On Friday I spoke at the Distinguished Leadership & Innovation Conference organized by the Caribbean’s premier business school Arthur Lok Jack Global School of Business.

I delivered the opening keynote on Shaping the Future of Business and also a workshop on Building and Implementing an Innovation Strategy.

Since it was a brief workshop to cover a very big topic I shared an Innovation Strategy Cheat Sheet with attendees, shown below, and as an interactive workshop took them through the issues they need to consider in creating an effective innovation strategy. Click here or on the image below to download the full page pdf.
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Responsible AI: selecting degrees of transparency and highlighting potential for bias

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As the power of AI soars, the ethics of how we use AI is becoming an increasingly pressing issue, which as a futurist I speak about frequently.

In working with the intelligent automation company Pega I have learned about some of their extremely interesting approaches to ‘Responsible AI’.
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