The Perspective of impact

The perspective of impact is subjective; it is changing with time and is often influenced by something we call the “ecology-of-the-self” (the context in which decisions are made facing natural disasters, data hacks, climate change, bubbles in the economy, geopolitics, wars, and more)

We are surrounded by more smart things, more money, more people moving into the cities, and more capacity and more speed. Yet, in the eternal universal mechanism of equilibrium, wherever there is more, less is sure to appear as well. Less healthy food, fewer farming landscapes (and worse, less knowledge about farming), less serotonin, and weaker human bonds.

At the end of the day, the main impact of the industrial revolution was to develop industries and business models around the core building blocks that have always been essential to humanities survival. The building blocks are slowly dying.

The industrial revolution turned out to be not a revolution at all, but a more linear evolution. The further we move away from its baseline, the easier it has become to forget the delicate balance of its intended impact.

Today, technology and business models are giving us the potential to travel to other planets, build colonies on Mars, connect our brains to the internet, grow organs, extend or lifespan, play God and create intelligence. We want to automate every aspect of our lives and live in parallel universes, ones that are written in code.

We cannot continue to use resources to improve the past (for example, the industrial revolution 4.0) Furthermore, we must educate a new generation of leaders if we are to pave a path toward collaboration and establish new economic behaviors. A path that is not anchored in copying the past into code, but rather using code to rethink the narratives of efficiency and productivity for a better, more bountiful future.

Competences of the future.

It’s hard, some say impossible, to predict the future, but you can navigate it if you have the right set of tools. It’s clear that with the current pace of jolting technologies, yesterday’s learning will fade away, and we will have a choice on our hand. To be replaced. Or to advance ourselves to a new level.

Algorithms certainly can process more data than we as humans can. Contextual placements, empathy, creativity and dreams are the territory of a human brain. The ability to forget is the first competence we must learn. We must forget the way we used to learn and rethink the whole narrative of learning.

Another competence we must master is critical thinking. In a world where we constantly shift from a physical reality to a virtual one, where we will need to adjust ourselves to immersive experiences, and where the laws of physics are written in code, it is critical thinking that will help us cope.

As empathy might be one of the most important competences to have in the future, it will be the force that anchor us to the essence of humanity. Without it, there is no reason to discuss the future at all. Creative thinking and curiosity, no society exists without them. It’s not a competence we need to learn, but rather never lose.

Losing sight of the problem

Since the industrial evolution, the global economy has not experienced such a dramatic transformation. We have several solutions, but we have lost sight of the problem. Every move dramatically altered the strategic and tactical landscapes. Leadership and innovation is how we address the changes.

What is the future of human resources?

Recently, I was asked to give a keynote speech for one of my clients during their human resources employee retreat. I have always believed that the greatest asset of any organization is its people (something that Elon Musk is discovering after he fired most of Twitters employees). That brings us to the question of why human resources departments (along with IT departments) always seem to be at the bottom of the food chain?

The human resources idea was conceived against the backdrop of the industrial revolution by Charles Babbage and Robert Owen. The intention was that the wellbeing of the worker was critical to worker productivity. The core purpose of human resources practice was to drive industrial welfare, personnel management, scientific management, organization management, and industrial psychology. But, like everything connected to the industrial revolution, ideas tend to be diluted and fade away, and from a productivity-driven function, human resources became an administrative department responsible for attracting, hiring, training, and developing employees.

(Yes, there are a few cases where the role of human resources has evolved to be more strategic, but these are few and not enough.)

The impact of new, jolt-inducing theologies on computation power, machine learning, automation, and fast-tacking, as well as social trends and a shift in narratives will require a new thinking. In order for organizations to secure their place in the future, they will need a guiding power to help them navigate the unknown.

The most important human attributes that have brought us this far are first, our ability to envision the future, to imagine multiple scenarios, and choose the one we want to go after. The one we believe is the best option for us. Secondly, our ability to cooperate and collaborate with each other. We value communication skills and an understanding that only when we work together can we grow and develop. And, finally, our ability to bring the right people together to engineer and build solutions for the future that we envision.

One could argue that the first step, envisioning the future, is something that leadership is responsible for, and as not everyone in the organization is a leader, this function is held by a small group of people at the top. However, the other two functions are related to industrial welfare, personnel management., scientific management, organization management, and industrial psychology. In other words, two-thirds of an organization’s ability to navigate the unknown is in the hands of human resources.

It is obvious that to have a successful future, all parts of the organization must work together. However, human resources are uniquely positioned to be especially helpful to the organization because of their focus on people.

This focus on people is crucial in this time of change. With the approaching era of mass technological automation, when algorithms will be able to process information faster and better than humans. And, as we step into a narrative where social constructs and public dialogues are determined by technology companies like TikTok rather than thought leader. It’s important more than ever to safeguard the humanity of organization. The ability to construct a dialogue with your co-workers, clients, and partners is not a marketing, IT, or R&D skill, but a basic human function. The product of human resources is understanding the constructive narratives, driving creativity and innovation, and influencing the companies strategic trajectory.

The future is not only about technology, it is about our ability to make technology work for us. It is about finding new ways to create value and to make a difference in the world. We need to be able to see beyond the horizon and to embrace the future with open arms. In order to achieve that, we need human resources. We must find ways to partner with technology to enhance creativity and thinking skills, rather than replace them. This approach will help us create better doctors, better lawyers, better leaders, and better dialogues. If we keep the human resources departments on the bottom of the food chain, we will find it almost impossible to tackle the unknown. Perhaps it’s time to rethink human resources departments as a profit centre rather than a cost centre.

Challenging the existing narratives of pedagogy.

Pedagogy must be treated as experimental science and as such

1.It should be constantly evolving and never stagnant;

2. It should be open to new ideas and approaches;

3. It should be constantly tested and evaluated;

4. It should be flexible and adaptable;

5. It should be grounded inbound research.

Unfortunately, today the fields of pedagogy is stuck in an endless loop of thought fixation, in which what exists is right and should not be changed. This loop is the result of a lack of imagination, and it is something that we must change if we want to secure a path for sustainable and resilient growth of intellect.

The availability of technological tools offers a unique opportunity to challenge the existing narratives of pedagogy.

Over the years, pedagogical narratives have been constructed with the belief that technology should be used in a particular way to support a particular pedagogical approach based on learning theories. These theories of learning have been passed down from previous generations of teachers, who were trained in traditional learning models of behaviorism and cognitivism. It is essential to understand why we are using technology in this way. Emerging technologies give us the ability to revolutionize our existing pedagogical approaches. These technologies provide a powerful platform for educators to challenge the existing approaches to pedagogy and education.

The possibilities are endless when it comes to the potential of technology in the fields of Pedagogy and education. The results can be truly groundbreaking, encouraging creativity and collaboration among students and educators. Taking a more personalized and individualized approach to education. Empowering students to take control of their learning and encouraging students to think critically about the world around them.

The perfect storm

There are types of storms that you can hear about on the news. There are types of storms that you can simply hear knocking on your window. And, there are types of storms that you can feel all around you—the perfect storms.

Perfect storms might be rare and require a perfect alignment of multiple elements from unrelated ecologies. Yet, once they hit, they emphasize the interconnectivity of these elements and the fragile lines that hold everything together. When a perfect storm arises, it can devastate the surrounding structures and collapse our societal wellbeing.

We are about to be struck by such a storm.

The consequences of COVID-19 are beginning to take a toll. I’m not here to judge the decisions that policymakers took when driving lockdowns, masks, distance working and learning, and more. Yet, the law of physics should have played a bigger role before taking these actions—every action has an equal opposite reaction. We have not even approached the full force of the aftermath winds, yet we can already now see a hint of what is coming our way.

The geopolitical climate is changing, and circus shows are only adding to an already burning situation. From a devastating blow to the promise of freedom in the digital domain to intensified supply chain struggles, fuel shortages, and food shortages. Add to that an uncontrolled inflation and the realization that nations around the world cannot sustain themselves, it is clear that the king is indeed naked.

One of my favorite quotes is by Vivian Greene, who said, “Life isn’t about waiting for the storm to pass. It’s about learning how to dance in the rain.”  When faced with a perfect storm, we all learn that there is no place we can simply wait it out.

On climate and data

Unfortunately, science is not based on data anymore, but on people’s opinions. We don’t try to learn the data, and instead get caught up in the buzzwords. We confuse correlation with causation, forgetting that correlation is not causation!

The climate is a non-linear, chaotic system that lacks a core of implicit order. As such, it is beyond our ability to fully understand and accurately predict. Carbon dioxide is essential to live on our planet, and it can’t be the enemy. By driving narratives that are not anchored in data, we lose sight of the bigger picture. Fossil fuel is a reliable, environment-friendly, and cost-effective energy source, while wind and solar, for example, are not.


Before we rush to upgrade all of our transportation models to a so-called green technology, we should step up our efforts and ensure that we have a grid and an infrastructure that is capable of carrying us into the future.

Dispatchability is a major consideration in the way we currently power our world. If we are not willing to invest in smarter methods for harvesting and storing green energy, we will never be able to control the way we ramp up or down our grids in an efficient, sustainable, and reliable way. (we can’t control the wind or harvest sunlight during the night)

Killing in the name – When everyone wants a job but no one wants to work anymore

Amazon has stopped using their six-wheeled robot, “Scout,” for home deliveries. FedEx is planning to discontinue its last-mile robot, Roxo.

FedEx chief transformation officer Sriram Krishnasam told employees that the last-mile delivery robot will be scaled back.

“Although robotics and automation are key pillars of our innovation strategy, Roxo did not meet necessary near-term value requirements for DRIVE,” Krishnasam wrote in the memo. “Although we are ending the research and development efforts, Roxo served a valuable purpose: to rapidly advance our understanding and use of robotic technology.”

At one hand, this is brilliant for humans who work with package logistics supply chain—they get to keep their jobs. I have always argued that we shouldn’t blindly replace human jobs with technology, and that technology is here to make us better humans, not replace us. Yet, I cannot help but wonder about the larger issues—the gap between policymaking, technology development, and social needs, wishes, and preferences.

Technology-driven automation has been around for a while. However, our physical and social infrastructure was always able to accommodate these technologies and the users repurposing of that technology.

With the advancements of technology and its impact on our social fabric, along with the lack of accountability and smarter decisions by policymakers, our infrastructure is beginning to show signs of wear.

Look at South Korea. The demographic problems are clearly showing a disconnect between the situation to its potentials. Samsung is placing a lot of emphasis on automation due to a lack of available workers. The construction industry is facing a shortage of 250,000 employees. Schools are closing due to a lack of students. The taxi industry is lacking 30% of its manpower. The South Korea crisis wasn’t entirely unexpected, given the writing that was on the wall for some time now. However, it was pushed back by those who cling to the past.

South Korea must be a red flag to Europe and the US. The demographic challenges and the shift in social needs, wishes, and preferences where everyone wants a job but no one wants to work anymore will require a new set of policies.  We cannot continue to patch our societal building blocks and infrastructure with temporary fixes. We must allocate enough management power, budget, and intellect to reflect on our future before it will become our present.

Amazon and FedEx’s struggle with their automated delivery services is a failure only if policymakers, cities, and business are unwilling to learn from it, as it is not a failure of technology, but of the business model and infrastructure.

The Future of eMobility – Is Electromobility inevitable? Is eMobility still inevitable, or do hurdles for electromobility remain?

The very nature of our world is one of continual change. This, for the most part, is a very positive thing. Occasionally, though, we get somewhat slightly ahead of ourselves and neglect to use our rearview mirror as we hurtle uncompromisingly into a pre-defined future.

Take the electric car as a prime example. The entire automotive industry has been pulled, pushed and cornered into accepting the inevitability of eMobility. Sure, studies have been performed, DOE, the EPA and the EU have issued directives calling for a shift away from internal combustion engined vehicles, and battery chemistry is advancing at pace. But when you zoom out and look at the bigger picture, it can be difficult to accept that all the due diligence has, in fact, been done.

Devil in the details

To get a better understanding of where we currently find ourselves, it is necessary to examine how we got here. Humanity’s quest for progress and profit have delivered us to the veritable crossroads that Robert Johnson sang about. For progress demands a price, much as the Devil does in Mr. Johnson’s song.

Around two years ago, TEMPUS.MOTU GROUP was charged with providing insights into the challenges that remain in the shift to electromobility and increased electrification. To say that, we identified a rather large pachyderm in the room would be something of an understatement. Policymakers, despite clear signals from the automotive industry, decided to bring the curtain down on internal combustion engines and ‘encourage’ automakers to begin the switch to electric propulsion systems. To be fair, there was mostly stick and very little carrot involved in the discussions that led to this dictate.

The real culprits

However, everyone agreed that the internal combustion engine had outlived its usefulness and was a key contributor to climate change, even though power generation, the air travel and shipping industries, along with construction, remain the biggest contributing culprits.

The task we had been given was to provide a group of companies with some insights and potential pathways forward, whilst highlighting the challenges that lay ahead on their pre-determined journey.

What emerged was fascinating. A complete disconnect between policymakers demands, access to the required natural resources, a lack of strategic planning and threat analysis, little or no public consultation on the question of electro mobility, and a decidedly poor international-level approach to what would ostensibly become one of the major technology shifts of our time.

As usual, policymakers made the simplistic choice to replace one technology (the combustion engine) with another (the electric motor and battery) without fully examining the potential for disruptive alternatives.

Horses’ asses

To paraphrase my business partner, Aric Dromi, we continue to design everything in our mobility and logistic systems around the width of two horses’ asses (based on the initial technology – the chariot – for which the Roman Empire built its first roads). For a wonderfully inventive and imaginative species, we seem to be very attached to our horses’ asses, as we continue to design everything around them…

Of course public consultations do not necessarily provide any measure of actionable direction, but they do offer a snapshot of peoples’ pain points in the current mobility paradigm, from which one might extrapolate and experiment with alternatives.

Similarly, we found that while governments were hell-bent on a technology shift towards electrification, they seemed less aware of the crumbling nature of the electrical grids in their charge and their marked inability to meet the coming demand for both generation and distribution of electricity (green or not) to power the cars of tomorrow. It is somewhat akin to having a baby in an empty bathtub.

The lack of foresight, planning, or even awareness to the potential challenges that lay ahead was nothing short of criminal. One must only look back around 20 years when diesel-engined cars were heralded, by the same cadre of policymakers, as being better for the environment than petrol-engined cars.

Of course hindsight is infrequently experienced with less than 20-20 vision, but to continue making such schoolboy errors is unforgivable, given the current state in which we find our planet.

Investment required

Our findings were relatively straightforward and actionable. We saw a clear need for massive levels of investment in national electricity grids and power generation facilities – the kind of investments that governments and nations alone might struggle to achieve without private investment – even in the short term. For without this and without the underlying charging infrastructure that electric cars demand, there will be a lot of immobile electric cars on our streets in the coming years.

We also understood the huge challenge that was dropped onto the laps of the automotive industry, forcing them to adapt combustion-engined platforms to electric propulsion, when in fact they would have benefited from another 8-10 years to develop a ‘skateboard’ platform that better met the needs of an electric car. We are getting there today, but it has been a costly process, during which time the Hydrogen Economy has emerged to fracture consensus.

A new way of thinking

One cannot help but think that once again we are traveling down that old Roman road, two asses wide, when we have an opportunity to re-imagine public transport and personal mobility, just as we have the potential to re-imagine the road haulage, construction, steel and shipping industries.

The potential for smart grids, metered by AI, a move to a form of Universal Basic Public Transport to reduce single-person journeys, a fresh approach to town planning that puts people, rather than traffic first, is not too much to ask for.

If we must cross The Rubicon, let us do so in full knowledge that things cannot remain as they once were. If the current gas, oil, and electricity shortages brought about by the conflict in Ukraine tells us anything, it is that we are still not prepared for tomorrow, or today, for that matter.

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