A book that has just been published in Italy proposes a journey across nine steps better to cope with the stresses of modern life

 

A winning entrepreneur is one who does not think like his colleagues. The most successful manager  is the one who manages to make his organisation take the highest leap. The ability to stand out from the “crowd”. Not just the desire to do more and better, but to do so differently from others. Understanding these kinds of mechanisms is important. Applying them is something personal. Reading “Al passo col futuro. Come sopravvivere all’imprevedibile accelerazione del mondo” (Keeping up with the future. How to survive the unforeseeable acceleration of the world) by Joi Ito and Jeff Howe is in any case useful to understand where we are and where the world is taking us.

The book, which has just been published in Italy, begins with the need to understand fully the fact that the world is more complex and volatile than at any other time in history. The tools of our modern life are progressively becoming faster, cheaper and smaller, and you just need one click, one tweet or one post for people to connect with the other billions of people across the globe. According to both authors, the encounter of these two revolutions has released an explosive force that is transforming every facet of society, from business to culture, from the public sphere to our most private moments.

The future is going faster than before, and everyone needs to be able to learn much more quickly and react much more quickly than in the past. In production organisation too.

If this is the logic, Joi Ito and Jeff Howe have distilled it into nine organisational principles to navigate and survive amid such a tumultuous situation. Starting with their experience, obviously. Howe is assistant professor at Northeastern University and coordinator, at the same university, of the Media Innovation course; Ito on the other hand is an entrepreneur and venture capitalist but he also defines himself as a defender of the emerging democracy, of privacy and freedom on the Internet as well as being director of the Media Lab at Boston MIT.

So to answer at speed to the speed of the world, according to both authors, for instance you need to welcome risk strategically with open arms rather than mitigate it and you need to be capable of drawing inspiration and innovative ideas from your network of relations. The book therefore spans nine main chapters, each characterised by a title that compares a “winner” with a “loser”. These titles indicate the same number of concepts and therefore the peculiar aspect of the entire volume: Skimming beats Authority, Pull beats Push, Compasses beats Maps, Risk beats Safety, Disobedience beats Conformity, Practice beats Theory, Diversity beats Capacity, Resilience beats Strength, System beats Object.

“Al passo con il futuro” is a good read whose contents you do not necessarily have to agree with, but which should be read with an open mind and the curiosity of understanding which leaps lead to novelty.

 

Al passo col futuro. Come sopravvivere all’imprevedibile accelerazione del mondo (Keeping up with the future. How to survive the unforeseeable acceleration of the world)

Joi ItoJeff Howe

Egea, 2017

06/04/2017