The Past, Present and Future of Social Media – How We Fell to the Dark Side and Why the Force is with Us


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It was 2017 when I failed to deliver what would have been my eighth book. At the time, I was approaching the two year anniversary of the release of my previous work, X: The Experience When Business Meets Design. I was feeling the pressure to deliver. At the same time, my goal was to amplify my reach as an author, speaker and also as an authentic voice in a sea rife with other brilliant minds and more so, exceptional marketers. But, 2017 came and went without a new manuscript. I never made it past the proposal stage. Somewhere between What’s the Future of Business (book 6)  and X, my ability to achieve previous depths of focus and creativity was not only waning, they had completely transformed into something more real-time, dynamic and shallow. While I was convinced that I was still able to achieve flow, I couldn’t. Everything was
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Lifescale Unboxing! The New Book is Finally Here, So Let’s Begin Our Journey Today!


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Wow. Just wow. This is the moment that I’ve been dreaming about for a long long time. I just can’t believe it’s finally here. Your support over the years mean everything. So naturally, I wanted to share this very special moment of unboxing our new book! Lifescale: How to Live a More Creative, Productive and Happy life is available online now! ? Amazon | Barnes and Noble | 800CEOREAD | BAM The first few days are a big deal to any author. If you have a spare moment, please consider placing an order and maybe add one or two for someone special in your life. ? If you do, please let me know in the comments, and I’ll send you a list of bonus material I wrote that tailors Lifescaling for a variety of real world scenarios and markets. I’ll send you a list via email and you can choose! From the
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My SXSW 2019 Schedule + The Official Debut of Lifescale: How to Live a More Creative, Productive and Happy Life


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Are you going to SXSW 2019? Fancy that! I am too. It’s been almost three-and-a-half years since my last book, X: The Experience When Business Meets Design. I’m so happy (and relieved) to share that I’m launching my next book at SXSW! Cue the trumpets! Introducing, Lifescale: How to Live a More Creative, Productive and Happy Life. While it’s my eighth book, it’s my first personal venture. I would love to share it with you in Austin if your schedule allows. There are several events to choose from and I’m hoping one of them lines up with your availability.

Lifescale @SXSW

March 8 – 12, 2019

All Day Every Day: Mercedes Media Lounge hosted by Techset and Guy Kawasaki – RSVP here (open to all SXSW badge holders) All Day Every Day: Lifescale will be available for sale in the Austin airport bookstore (Book People)!

March 8, 2019

8 –
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Smartphones and Voice-Assisted Devices Create Opportunities for Modern Customer Experiences


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Anyone who uses a smartphone can attest to the incredible power of real-time, in-the-moment discovery that leads to decisions and outcomes. But, now in an age of voice-assisted devices, we are further empowered to command information or purchase on-demand. “OK Google, Alexa, Hey Siri, what are the best bluetooth headphones for me?” Or, “Please reorder groceries from last week for delivery tomorrow afternoon.” Like mobile shopping, voice-assisted behavior is also becoming second-nature. Brands must now reimagine the customer journey and design for always-on, continuous and assistive engagement…dedicated for voice and mobile screens.

Every day, customers are becoming more and more mobile and as a result, more informed, empowered, demanding and impatient. Mobile devices and smart assistants are now the first point of reference for a rapidly growing share of your market. These devices add a new dimension to the shopper journey while also introducing new shopping behaviors. For
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It’s Time to Break Free from Digital Distractions: A Live Interview with Digital Trends


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On February 22, I had the privilege of being interviewed by Greg Nibler of the daily video podcast Digital Trends Live about my upcoming book, Lifescale: How to Live a More Creative, Productive and Happy Life. (Video at the end.) Digital Trends is a Portland, ORE technology news, lifestyle, and information website that publishes news, reviews, guides, how-to articles, descriptive videos and podcasts about technology and consumer electronic products. They help readers and those who tune into their programming keep tabs on the fast-paced world of tech with all the latest news, fun product reviews, insightful editorials and sneak peaks. On the show, I talked about my work over the last 20 years studying disruptive technologies and their impact on business and markets. More so, I focused on the irony that somewhere along the way, I fell victim to those very technologies. The truth is that I was
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It’s Time to Escape from the Dark Side of Distractions to Live a Better Life


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Are you struggling with any of the following?
  • Focus
  • Procrastination
  • Anxiety
  • Self-esteem
  • Forgetfulness
  • Creativity
You are not alone… Somewhere along the way, we have become distracted. Maybe we don’t realize the extent to which our everyday rituals, favorite devices and apps, or where we focus our attention is affecting us. It’s time to escape from the dark side of distractions to live a better life. Introducing Lifescale, a new movement to discover what’s really important, break bad habits, establish rituals and learn routines that will help you achieve your goals. Reading Lifescale is like holding up a mirror, and revealing a new you, as your obsessive relationship with distractions melts away. From simple first steps to reclaiming your attention, to becoming more satisfied, inspired, and creative, this book will lead you through your own journey of lifescaling: redefining success on your own terms. Who’s in charge of your destiny?
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The Reveal: Lifescale, How to Live a More Creative, Productive and Happy Life


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I’m very proud (and relieved) to announce my next book, Lifescale: How to Live a More Creative, Productive and Happy Life. I’m also beside myself to share that it’s available to pre-order as of today! Lifescale was written to help you break free from distractions, sharpen your focus, spark creativity and unlock new possibilities as a result. This is my eighth book but first non-business book. It’s not the book I set out to write. It’s the book I needed. Here’s a bit of the back story… As you may or may not know, it’s been over three years since my last book X: The Experience When Business Meets Design changed how we think about experiences and how to design them for a modern world. I had planned to follow it up over a year-and-a-half ago. Well, that didn’t happen. And, that’s where this story begins. I found myself struggling to
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Customer Experiences Become Memories, Good or Bad, and They Add Up To Your Brand


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Customer experience (CX) is the sum of the all interactions a customer has with your business. It’s not enough to measure performance in any one moment. The customer doesn’t care about your individual operations. All they care about is how well they can reach their objective and how they feel along the way (and after). This is where most companies miss opportunities in CX. It’s not a tech or business strategy that can be simply defined by a framework. True CX is a matter of perspective and empathy. It’s possessive. It’s theirs. It’s the customer’s experience, with an emphasis on the apostrophe. Their experiences become memories. Whether they’re good or bad, it’s what they remember that becomes your brand and what they recall or share with others in critical moments of truth. Anything that’s forgettable is also your brand. When it comes to designing meaningful experiences, value is in
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How to Be Disruptive and not Disrupted – Motivation for Tomorrow’s Innovators


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As the fortune reads, “may you live in interesting times.” It’s both a blessing and a curse as interesting implies not only arousing curiosity or catching one’s attention, but also presenting challenging and enthralling opportunities and experiences. Well, we do live in interesting times and every day, I’m studying and living through new experiences and trends to learn, unlearn and grow. But interesting times doesn’t quite describe what’s happening today nor does it properly set expectations for what’s to come. We are wading in and headed toward deeply disruptive times…in every facet of our lives. The truth is that there are things happening now and will in the future that are beyond our control. And, there are also things happening that we must aim to control. What you do and what you’ve done, what you’ve learned and experienced and what you can and need to accomplish now and in
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Reinventing Field Service Management and the Entire Mobile and Remote Workforce


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If you work in field services or as a tech strategist/consultant in mobile and remote work, I think you may find this conversation interesting. Everything about the future of work is being reimagined. I recently joined ZDNet and Sodexo for the Savvy Business Leaders podcast series. The conversation quickly expanded beyond the realm of field service management to explore all digital trends that are affecting and empowering businesses in all industries at every level. Please listen and let me know if this helps you.

Futurist Brian Solis on reinventing field service management

In this episode, host Bill Detwiler talks field service management with Brian Solis, Principal Analyst and Futurist at Altimeter, a Prophet Company, and Paul Bean, CEO of Mining Worldwide at Sodexo. Companies use field service management whenever they deliver products or services offsite. In part one, Solis explains how disruptive technologies are enabling connected field service
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Altimeter’s Top Digital Trends for 2019


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Each year, the Altimeter analyst team predicts digital trends that will have the biggest impact on businesses. In 2019, my colleagues Charlene Li, Omar Ahktar, Susan Etlinger, along with yours truly, share our take on what we see as most important trends to follow.

Digital Transformation, Digital Experience, Brand and Innovation: Brian Solis

CIOs Become Cross-Functional Business Partners to Accelerate Enterprise-Wide Digital Transformation

The “digital” in digital transformation is no longer just about investing in the latest disruptive technology trends. IT is also becoming an important strategic partner in facilitating the business goals of key stakeholder groups across the company. As such, the IT organization is dividing efforts to lead enterprise-wide digital transformation while also enabling business groups to modernize and grow according to their respective roadmaps. This creates a hybrid, agile operational approach that aligns technology and resource investments with the needs and objectives of each group to attain
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The 2018-2019 State of Digital Transformation


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I’m proud to announce the availability of The 2018-2019 State of Digital Transformation report. Now in its fifth year, our annual “State of Digital Transformation” research continues to document the constantly evolving enterprise. As disruptive technologies and their impact on organizations and markets continue to progress, our research aims to capture the shifts and trends that are shaping modern digital transformation. In 2018, strategic digital transformation is only becoming more pervasive moving beyond IT to impact competitiveness throughout the organization. Budgets are soaring. The list of disruptive technologies on the radar of stakeholders is expanding. Ownership is moving to the C-Suite and managed by cross-functional, collaborative groups. Customer experience (CX) continues to lead digital transformation investments, but as we observed in 2017, employee experience and organizational culture are also rising in importance to empower and accelerate change, growth, and innovation. This year, it’s clear that digital transformation is
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Oh The Humanities of It All: A Podcast with Andrew Koppel on the Importance of Social Science in an Era of AI


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Sasha Freemind
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Somewhere between Summer and Fall, I spent an unforgettable moment with Andrea Koppel. The good news is that we recorded our conversation. If the surname sounds familiar, it’s because Andrea is the daughter of iconic broadcast journalist and host of Nightline Ted Koppel. Andrea is a force of her own however. She’s the host of the uber-popular Time4Coffee podcast. It’s a show dedicated to students and entrepreneurs where “caffeinated career conversations” guide listeners in their studies and career pursuits. Initially, we focused on A.I. and why social sciences and creativity are more important in an era of machines and robots than ever. As time went on, I started to share a more personal side of my work, my challenges with technology and also what I can only say is a preview of my next big thing (click here to be among the first to
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Digital Darwinism: What Killed Borders, Blockbuster and Toys R Us and How to Survive


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We live in an era of “digital Darwinism,” a time when technology and society are evolving faster than the ability of many organizations to adapt. It is for this reason (along with a myriad of other problems of course) that in fact killed Borders, Blockbuster, Toys “R” Us and the like. Not only did digital Darwinism cost us close to a half billion job, it’s only accelerating. As Leon C. Megginson once said in paraphrasing Charles Darwin’s Origin of the Species, “It is not the strongest of the species that survives, nor the most intelligent that survives. It is the one that is most adaptable to change.” Over the years, I’ve studied how disruptive technology affects consumer behavior and decision-making. I’ve also researched how businesses react (or don’t) to these changes. What I’ve learned is that barring a few exceptional instances of complete ignorance, organizations are open
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The Frozen Middle Separates Management from Leadership (and Innovation)


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Illustration created with culture design firm @GapingVoid We live in a time of digital Darwinism. As technology evolves so do markets. And as they evolve, behaviors, values and norms also adapt. This sets the stage for the widespread disruption that we are witnessing today. Regrettably, or not, many reigning executives are not experienced to lead growth and innovation strategies as disruptive technologies radically shift everything around them. Yet, no matter how well we study history, it’s always doomed to repeat itself. There’s something about being in charge and surrounding yourself with other executives, boards of directors or investors that project a fallacy of invincibility. “I know the world is changing, but I don’t see it affecting me. I’m in control. Everything is fine.” These are the words of someone destined to tempt fate and inevitably repeat history. As I often say, disruption is the result of an all too
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Dear executives, find and empower your change agents, innovators and intraprenuers


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I’ve spent the better part of 20 years studying innovation and specifically, the past several years studying the people behind digital transformation. One universal truth I’ve found time and time again is that, in the face of disruption, the most meaningful and lasting change is always human. But, that spark, vision, or drive to change doesn’t always come from the top. Many times, there are those unsung heroes who feel, see or know at their very core, what needs to be done, they just don’t always know what it takes to organize or rally everyone else to move in different and challenging directions. These are the change agents, the innovators, the intrapreneurs, those who believe in something so passionately, that they take bold risks to open new doors. In these times of Digital Darwinism, legacy businesses need this talent now more than ever. They don’t just represent a different way
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Three Brand Storytelling Misconceptions That Are Holding You Back


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Guest Post by Ekaterina Walter and Jessica Gioglio In the era of the connected digital consumer, brand storytelling needs to undergo a radical shift. For many companies, brand storytelling has become a buzzword, a way to support marketing campaigns or polished commercials. So much so, that we’ve lost our focus on the heart and soul of brand storytelling. It’s time we took the BS out of brand storytelling and focus on what truly matters: building the meaningful and relevant connections with our customers. In our new book,The Laws of Brand Storytelling, we talk about the impact storytelling-done-right has on your business and provide a roadmap which you can use to plug in your own brand storytelling strategy and approach to achieve that impact. In this post, however, let’s address the top brand storytelling misconceptions that are holding most companies back from achieving that impact:

Misconception #1: “Brand storytelling
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The Magic of Creativity and Innovation Happens Outside of Your Comfort Zone


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In July 2018, I had a chance to speak in Rancho Palo Verdes at the NBJ Summit. I think I would move to the area given the opportunity. It’s a wonderful oasis in between the [INSERT ADJECTIVE/S HERE] of Southern California and the serenity of a beachside community. Before walking off stage, I noticed a graphic recording by The Sketch Effect off to my left. I missed it during my presentation, but was more than curious about what was captured following the event. Then, like all of us, I got busy. I forgot all about it until I found a rare moment when I could dig through past emails. And, there it was! It was interesting after all this time, to revisit the conversation, what I hoped to communicate and what the artist captured. I was impressed and I wanted to share their work with you here. It almost looks
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Through a Research Lens: What Captured My Attention in 2018 and What’s in My Purview for 2019


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Photo Illustration by Tracy Ma/The New York Times; Shutterstock (child and phone)

Prophet’s Emily Schreck recently interviewed the Altimeter analysts to spotlight some of the things that we never get a chance to share, such as what we’re working on, what has our attention and what’s on the horizon. Schreck’s piece is now live.
This year has been a whirlwind for Altimeter’s famed analysts; Charlene Li, Brian Solis, Susan Etlinger and Omar Akhtar. The team has published several new research reports, presented keynote speeches at top global industry conferences, and helped some of the world’s top brands learn how to best leverage disruptive technologies.
Not all of the Q&A made the final cut, but I did want to share it with you here.

Altimeter Roundtable: What’s Happening with Our Analysts

Emily Schreck: What research areas have been your focus in 2018? Brian Solis: 2018 has been a whirlwind
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Find Joy and Meaning Along the Long and Winding Road of Life


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A moment if you will…away from everything else. Sometimes I wonder how I got here. If I had to be honest, I would say that none of it was intentional. And if I had to be fully transparent, there were many throughout my life who believed I wouldn’t amount to much. There was a time when I believed them. I let it define me. The truth is that I still think about it from time to time. Am I supposed to be here? How do I earn the right to stay here? I’m not sure when or where or how, but something clicked along the way. I should say that it’s still clicking. I realize that none of this is easy nor is it meant to be. I still struggle like anyone else. I still fight to stay relevant in an ever-increasing sea of really smart people. I still wonder
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