Millions of young Americans are experiencing a “quarter-life crisis.” They understand that the economy and the nature of work have changed forever. Talent today want more bang for their buck. They want to leave a mark, make a contribution, have a purpose. In short, they’re seeking a calling more than a career. They crave meaning, autonomy, and exploration. Managing one’s vocation successfully is no different than managing a business. And that’s why the contingent workforce has the power to[...]
This year’s highly anticipated “God of War” video game launched to massive critical and commercial success. Just three days after its release, it sold a record-breaking 3.1 million copies. Across the world, “God of War” has been hailed as a masterpiece whose grandeur can’t be overstated -- a rare adventure that’s delivered on lofty promises. I admit, I got sucked into the storyline right away, squandering an entire Sunday to cleave Scandinavian skulls with a magical axe. It was epic. And rich. And even moving. But I also discovered that Kratos, the warrior god of the eponymous franchise, provides a poignant object lesson in business leadership maturity -- from a flawed, toxic, self-serving, and ruthless bastard to a wiser, more tempered elder statesman who’s eager to have his successors learn from his mistakes...and “be better.” Yeah, I’m splashing as much metaphor as Kratos splatters guts, but it’s my article. So let’s do this.
Around 1983, we witnessed the stirrings of what would become micromanaging “helicopter parents,” who in turn sired a generation of young, hovering warders instead of mentors. The problem, according to child development experts, is that these failure-intolerant practices have created a generation where more people hesitate to take risks, express unconventional ideas or test new approaches to solving problems for fear of rebuke. The mandate for business leaders who are trying to innovate and keep pace with fierce competition seems to be, “failure is not an option.” It makes sense then that managers and executives begin to lean toward strictly policing their workers. Yet as child development and business experts attest, tightly controlled attempts to prevent failure may only prevent success. Let’s look at how we can staunch the rise of helicopter cultures.
Too often, in my opinion, talk of virtual reality (VR) seems relegated to the realms of science fiction, video games, film and television. Virtual reality is no novelty. The real-world benefits and applications are already surpassing entertainment. VR resides in the domain of exponential technologies -- digital advances that are transforming the world through intelligent sensors, machine learning, robotics, synthetic biology and 3D printing. Consider the latter. Three-dimensional printers don’t merely produce models and art. They’re capable of constructing habitable living spaces, tools, prosthetics and even rudimentary food. Likewise, virtual reality is changing the face of medicine and education. It’s also strengthening diversity by bridging philosophical divides and empowering people to empathize with others. For all these reasons, VR represents the very real future of business, workforce development and talent management.