Archives For Speeches

April and I had a blast in San Diego at the wonderfully organized and run Sustainable Brands conference. A big part of what made it special for us was getting to give the opening keynote, which set the tone for the event.

SB14 went for three more days, during which many people started great conversations with us by telling us how the talk had affected them.

Our topic was trust, starting from the observation that many of the institutions and services we take for granted these days seem to have been designed from mistrust of the average person. It’s so common as to be mainstream, but once you know to look for it (for design from mistrust), you see it everywhere.

Our talk (a tag-team talk, minus the Mexican wrestling masks) is available online now. (Note that there’s a four-minute pre-roll ad from Unilever, so now you know how far to skip ahead if you don’t want to watch it. It is moving, though.)

Last week I was in Switzerland, first to run the “Future of the Customer” workshop I described earlier (and will return to), then to attend and speak at LIFT14 in Geneva.

At LIFT, I dove into many of the topics that bubble out of the Relationship Economy: the language of advertising, minding our Commons, seeing the big picture and DFTBA.

Here’s my LIFT talk, plus some Q&A after:

Here’s the Prezi I created for the speech.

This year I’m going to be putting the Relationship Economy’s ideas to work in many ways.

The debut event is a day-and-a-half-long workshop I’m running at the GDI — the Gottlieb Duttweiler Institut – an excellent think tank based in Zurich. The workshop will run all day Monday, February 3, and end with lunch on the 4th.

The online description is in German, but I’ll be running the workshop in English. In case your Deutsch isn’t what it used to be, here are a few more details about what we’ll cover.

Consumerism ate the world. It didn’t just change consumer products and entertainment. It changed the way we relate with one another, the way large organizations treat us and even the way we see the Earth — and not all for the better. That consumerist model peaked some years ago, when there were still only a few TV networks and newspapers weren’t falling like flies.

Now we’re in uncharted waters, where a strong point of view on what this big shift is about is really useful. Even better is a strong PoV that has explanatory power looking back at history and out to the future. The Relationship Economy is just such a point of view, and one that is humanist and optimistic to boot (though very messy in the near term). In this workshop we will apply the thesis to that most fundamental area: customer relationships.

Along the way, we will address chewy questions such as, “Are we trustworthy?,” “What are our new sources of value?” and “How is power shifting?” Guests with their feet on the ground in different industries will offer case studies of their experiences. We’ll run through several exercises together. And we’ll wrap up with what to do going forward, to thrive in this emerging Relationship Economy.

If this sounds interesting to you, please sign up here. If you know someone who ought to be at this workshop, please let them know. It’s the best way to strengthen relationships.

Brainstorming a learning platform

Jerry —  September 27, 2013 — 4 Comments

In August I spoke at Catalyst Week, a terrific brain- and heart-blending series of talks and events that are part of the Downtown Project in Las Vegas (more here). The topic for August’s Catalyst Week — they do these pretty much monthly — was education, so I decided to give a speech that would build on the TEDxCopenhagen talk I gave a year ago (here’s a full-text transcript).

Half my Vegas talk summarizes and crystallizes the talks that went before, in order to clear the decks enough to do some serious brainstorming. Of course, there was precious little time left for that brainstorming, so I’d love to continue it here.

On to the new talk:

Jerry Michalski visits Downtown Project Las Vegas from Downtown Project LV on Vimeo.

If you didn’t post a video to YouTube, you can’t alter it. The machine translation of the TEDx talk I gave last October about education is awful, so I listened to my talk and transcribed it. Aside from saying “so” and “let me” too many times, it ages well. Here’s the full text:

What If We Trusted You – transcript

Go back in your minds to fourth grade. Put yourselves in fourth grade and I am your teacher, if that doesn’t frighten you too much. You are in my writing class and I’ve given you a poetry assignment.

So, you’re actually writing. You’re in the flow, the words are pouring out of your fingertips, you’re really happy. You’re in that place where you’re making something beautiful…

And then all of a sudden, the bell goes off.

Like, what’s up with that? What do we all know is going to happen right now? What’s the next thing that’s going to happen? You’re going to put down your pens, and you’re going to go to math class, right?

Continue Reading…

The talk I gave a few months ago at Rebuild21 got me invited to speak at TEDxCopenhagen, which was a terrific experience.

A few days have gone by and our talks are now online. Here’s mine:

Rebuild21, held recently in Copenhagen, had a pretty ambitious goal: reimagining multiple sectors of the economy, all in two days.

I was pleasantly surprised, first by the open, smart, skeptical and foresighted approach the first few speakers took in tackling the financial sector – Richard Kelly and Jem Bendell – and then by the equally smart, inquisitive, friendly folks attending the event.

Sofus Mitgard and his crew created a special environment (nice hosting, Lori!).

Sofus asked me to do a short keynote on rebuilding education, one of my favorite topics. Here’s that talk:

And a few more resources:

  • The panel that followed my talk
  • A brief interview that Lori did afterward
  • The Prezi I created for the talk
  • All of this, linked in my Brain

Thanks for a memorable and very useful conference.

Recently I gave a talk at the Personal Digital Archiving conference, in which I described what I’ve learned from 15+ years of using TheBrain.

It was a really fun talk to give, both because everyone present is working on how to preserve our many-faceted personal information, and because my use of TheBrain has given me many insights.

For a quick intro to my Brain before you watch this, view this earlier post of mine here.

The projected Brain you see in the video isn’t that clear, for which I apologize. You can partly make up for that by tracking where I go from my online Brain, starting here.

At a recent workshop, I gave a talk titled “Other Kinds of Innovation,” based on this Prezi:

In it, I described three sources of innovation that tend to get short schrift in the whirlwind of books, talks and seminars abot innovation: social innovation, dark innovation and innovations by (not for) the poor.

The first of these, social innovation, is getting more attention thanks to books like The Wisdom of Crowds and Crowdsourcing, even though our culture seems to idolize the lone inventor. Fortunately, recent books like Steven Johnson’s Where Good Ideas Come From are tackling the myth of the lone inventor, but in our individualistic society, it’s a hard myth to shake. (In the Prezi above, this section is intentionally the least developed.)

The second kind of innovation that we often ignore is the category of innovations that are a net negative to society, which I’m calling dark innovations. These include defensive innovations by incumbents trying to postpone their doom, the unintended negative consequences of innovations created with good intent, and general overconfidence.

The third category is a subtle one in several ways. First, it’s not innovations for the poor, but rather by. Second, these innovations don’t always occur at the frenetic modern pace of innovation, so their pace can hide them. And third, some of these innovations are actually old, excellent ideas that have been buried for a few centuries and are now being rediscovered or reinvented, such as the methods of natural farming.

I intend to do a screencast of this Prezi, or perhaps several, but I’m posting now for a different reason.

Among the attendees as I presented was Peter Denning, who besides writing about innovation is the editor of the ACM‘s Ubiquity Magazine. Peter liked the perspective on dark innovation in particular, so we proceded to do an email interview, the results of which you can read here.

What do you think?

Spend a few minutes with Jordan Grader or Leah Perlman and you’ll discover why The Happiness Institute is bound to be a special place.

They’ve just opened the doors to HI and are still discovering who shows up and how they’ll use their space, which used to be a TV studio. It’s in its chrysalis phase, on the way to being a happiness-centered open university. Or something like that.

On Saturday, January 7, I’ll be exploring the Relationship Economy at HI from 10am to 4pm. In the spirit of happiness, you won’t be staring at my talking head the whole time. We’ll gnaw on some thorny questions together, hear from others with groovy, resonant ideas and mix it up, all with the goal of expanding our collective understanding of this Relationship Economy critter. We’ll also be recording a bunch, to create some media artifacts for use later.

Attendance maxes out at 70; the cost is a lunch fee. The Facebook invite page is here.

Background materials are mostly on this blog. I’d recommend the posts explaining the REXpedition, exploring abundance (in education) and looking at creators and Wikipedia. If you’re feeling adventuresome, learn about my Brain (and dive in yourself), and also browse the abundance and REX Prezis.