A Whole New Mind – this book contends that we are in a period of change in our world economy that will require a new skill set for most people and companies. We will need to be more right-brained. Some of us are more naturally right-brained. But now, everyone will need to be – to be competitive. What does “right brained” mean? The right side of the brain is more involved in creativity, concept, and design. The left side of the brain is more involved in logic and reason. So, “right-brained” thinking is dominated by creativity and concepts. Creativity and big-picture thinking can’t be automated (like say, doing your taxes) so, this is the area where value is created and competitive advantage is gained.
Creativity and big-picture thinking can’t be automated (like say, doing your taxes) so, this is the area where value is created and competitive advantage is gained.
The left brain remembers names, the right brain remembers faces. This is an oversimplification, as both sides of the brain are involved in a lot of operations, but some things are “favored” more by one side of the brain than the other.
The skills need in the past few decades have been left-brain leaning. Programmers, engineers, and analysts have pulled the big bucks and rightly so. The Information Age has needed left brain people to logically build the technical architecture we now enjoy.
But, due to outsourcing to less expensive labor (including Asia), automation, and abundance, the left-brain dominated world is being commodotized and outsourced. This is causing the left-brain person and company to lose the edge needed to compete. What is needed is the left brain and the right brain. Right brain thinking is needed more than ever to come up with new designs and solutions to create a new level of competitiveness.
We are moving from the Information Age to the Conceptual Age.
How can people and companies be more right-brained?
1. Design: Due to people’s abundance in the first-world, design needs to help bring a renewed since of meaning to the product. Also, when the technology inside of the product has been commodity and outsourced, then design is the great differentiator.
2. Create a compelling story around yourself, your company, and your product.
3. Move beyond analysis to synthesis – look for connections that others may not see – and step back to look at the big picture.
4. Empathize with customers, get to know them, and what makes them tick. Empathy for the customer will allow you to make new product breakthroughs.
5. Play: Don’t always be too serious, have fun.
6. People who live an an abundant society look for purpose. (Check Mazlow’s Heiarchy of needs.) Work to meet your customer’s need for purpose and meaning.