HERE FOR THE
* yes, real word, though an old-fashioned one, for getting one's thinking ON. Think of it as partying - without losing our minds, money or car keys.
Being inextricably knitted into a living system in crisis is no fun. Despite our species name, wise is apparently not how we humans are going to roll. We are thrashing against inevitable change. Uurgh. It's all so miserable, frustratingly stupid and dystopian bleak if long-range time travel is your game. Buuut ...
IT CAN (wait, should) FEEL LIKE AN ADVENTURE ✈
“You never change things by fighting the existing reality. To change something, build a new model that makes the existing model obsolete.”
- Buckminster Fuller
Sounds like an escapist s t r e t c h, or sacrilegious (!) to find the fun while facing doom, right? Yet, is is a time-honoured method for humans who find themselves in a bit of a pickle. Research bears out that it's how we learn faster, come up with fresh ideas and co-operate better with strangers.
It flings open the doors and windows to unlikely opportunities, stretchy resilience ... and living out thrilling stories to tell around a crackling bonfire.
If you'll bear with me, I would like to make a case for the planet-saving genius of intelligent leisure. That we may again recreate ourselves with quality recreation. Romp forth if ye dare.
I am Max, Hunter of Genius. Stoker of the primordial flame of curiosity and generosity needed to adapt & evolve speedily 🔥 without burning out.
Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic.
- Arthur C. Clarke
I'm a futurist, who builds unusually magical learning experiences that help people prepare for big change. So they can take more interesting risks. Develop skills and creative innovations that open opportunities and freedoms. And find the friends who will bolster their courage to be daring when it really counts.
"YOU HAVE TO SPECIALISE" HEHE, NO.
If you've been called jack-of-all-trades, polymath, philomath, systems thinker, Renaissance wo/man, multipotentialite (uurgh), T-shaped - you are my kind of unruly people.
It puts everyone at ease (especially you, okay, maybe your parents) when you fit tidily into a familiar category after replying to: "so, what do you do?"
Industrialisation loves specialisation. But when we need to up sticks and move to a higher level of functioning; you need the connectors, or it all fractures and our precariously balanced civilizations collapse inelegantly into thousands of separate bits.
A FELLOWSHIP for THOSE who CONTAIN MULTITUDES
Working across wildly varied disciplines allows me to connect knowledge, stories, tools and trusted relationships - from ambitious startups, through business schools; governments; policy-shaping non-profits; multinational corporations and organisations; to inventors, and indie artists - my job is to find the a-ha! To see what's working in one domain and cross-pollinating the useful bits into others.
Truly delightful and ever-interesting work. UNTIL freaking 2020 smashed into us all. And we got to watch in realtime how foresight scenarios and risk modelling are rendered laughably useless by contagious, belligerent stupidity. Not just for pandemics. The floor fell out of any faith that humanity can meet shared disaster with a robust set of plans wrought by clever eggheads.
My work is adapting accordingly. Because, yiiiikes. We are entering the dead scary part of our tale now. And like Jumanji, we're all sucked into the action.
If it was a movie, this is the part where the unlikely heroes emerge and defy the insane odds, meshing their unique skills in surprising ways, and eventually learn to respect and become fast friends.
Hoping a surge of young ones will be those heroes saving the day/world/civilization? Er .. the OECD unexpectedly found that across economies, teenagers are increasingly choosing more boring careers, including those at risk to automation. Uh ohhhh 💔
As our reality gets more uncertain, we crave comforting familiarity, and fiercely defend it. We also hate feeling judged, and being told what to do; but that's another discussion.
Counterintuitively - being adventurous ≠ risky! Daring steadily diminishes fear. Even if it doesn't make sense to our instinctive brain. Those who embark on REAL adventure are prepared as heck. They nerd-out on safety, skill-up, kit-up and value calm.
Boring choices deplete us psychologically. Sameness expands the competition and reduces our negotiating power for roles. Wedging ourselves into work that is smaller than the size of our souls makes for unhappy humans. Even if that work pays you a fortune. Boring offers short-term relief, long-term vulnerability.
But hey, I'm not here to whip out a #futureofwork #futureskills number on you. Alas, it's too late for that. We need the big guns. As promised, I'm here for your LEISURE - playtime, hobbies, recreation, retreats, sabbaticals, and the merriment betwixt.
NOT to escape reality, but to gently expand our world.
THE FINE PRINT
I'm on the side of ALIVENESS, bountiful biodiversity, particularly wild things safely flourishing in the wild to which they are best-adapted.
Apparently this position vexes some people no end. [Hence this warning]. Since I may drop in the commonsense case why nature-friendly economic upgrades are compatible with good business, reducing conflict, migration, disease and inequality. Changing our success measures beyond old-reality GDP growth, opens SO MANY NEW KINDS OF GOOD JOBS that aren't just gig and side hustles or bullsh*t jobs.
(Not how you roll? Sorry not sorry you feel that way )
Being nature-strong isn't an idealistic soft-arsed position. Not only as biosphere insurance against domino-ing disasters, from which we will not have the luxury of buying our way out. Opportunities for these long-horizon investment are MASSIVE and thrillingly epic in scope. It's a good time to get in.
Ha. That didn't scare you. I like you already :) :)
If you're here because something in this page sang clearly to you - please let me know. There may be something that we should be working on together.