A fascinating talk on a potential future for food production. By utilizing “bio-printing,” Andreas Forsace and team at Modern Meadow can organically produce meat and leather without actually harming an animal. And the economic, societal, and environmental impacts are astounding (96% fewer greenhouse gases! 96% less water!?), to the point that, if adopted, much of the modern pricing and economic culture we know would be nothing but a memory.
You do something all day long, don’t you? Every one does. If you get up at seven o’clock and go to bed at eleven, you have put in sixteen good hours, and it is certain with most men, that they have been doing something all the time. They have been either walking, or reading, or writing, or thinking. The only trouble is that they do it about a great many things and I do it about one. If they took the time in question and applied it in one direction, to one object, they would succeed. Success is sure to follow such application. The trouble lies in the fact that people do not have an object, one thing, to which they stick, letting all else go. Success is the product of the severest kind of mental and physical application.
- Make it your responsibility to decide what matters, and when to get it done—no one else is going to determine or prioritize it for you.
- Don’t keep separate work and personal calendars or priority lists. (Fast Company likes Clear, if you need an app.)
- Frequently take stock of what’s working and what’s not—because it’s always changing. Put that on your calendar.
- Schedule time for small, manageable steps in the areas of their life they’ve identified as important instead of just identifying huge, lofty goals.
- Focus on and celebrate what does get done, not what falls by the wayside—small or partial steps are better than nothing.
[Image: Flickr user Joe Plocki]
I worry that something has gone seriously wrong with the way we run companies. If you read the media coverage of our company, or of the technology industry in general, it’s always about the competition. The stories are written as if they are covering a sporting event. But it’s hard to find actual examples of really amazing things that happened solely due to competition. How exciting is it to come to work if the best you can do is trounce some other company that does roughly the same thing? That’s why most companies decay slowly over time. They tend to do approximately what they did before, with a few minor changes. It’s natural for people to want to work on things that they know aren’t going to fail. But incremental improvement is guaranteed to be obsolete over time. Especially in technology, where you know there’s going to be non-incremental change.
So a big part of my job is to get people focused on things that are not just incremental. Take Gmail. When we released that, we were a search company—it was a leap for us to put out an email product, let alone one that gave users 100 times as much storage as they could get anywhere else. That is not something that would have happened naturally if we had been focusing on incremental improvements.
To me, the thing with the most impact is that there are no set platforms anymore. Nothing is hardened in cement like TV or print was; figuring out how to create and deliver messages now is liquid, constantly evolving as new technologies are introduced. It’s incredibly exciting. Interestingly, in this new world, powerful storytelling—a form as old as humanity itself—is more important than ever. Goddard said, “Sometimes reality is too complex; stories give it form.” I agree with that. Storytelling is timeless and, as we’re seeing, how to deliver a story is very much of its time.
I don’t believe in market research. I don’t believe in marketing the way it’s done in America. The American way of marketing is to answer to the wants of the customer instead of answering to the needs of the customer. The purpose of marketing should be to find needs — not to find wants.
People do not know what they want. They barely know what they need, but they definitely do not know what they want. They’re conditioned by the limited imagination of what is possible. … Most of the time, focus groups are built on the pressure of ignorance.