Old school

Not a day goes past or a futurist predicts a brave new world. One where entrepreneurship, artificial intelligence, the human cloud, big data and anything that represents the new economy are put in a comprehensive framework that represents our tomorrow. A tomorrow already emerging and on the verge of overpowering our mundane little world of today.

The disruption so far isn’t coming from the apostles predicting a radical future but rather from the conservative forces of the past, holding on to what they currently have, while trying to stop the future from happening.

In the financial world banks are the prime example. The crisis in 2008 has brought mayhem to all their customers but not to them. There is no evidence for any learning or fundamental change. Nor do bankers want any. They continue to make money on money doing the only thing they claim to know how: manage risk. Well, the masters of risk ensure that the risk is with you as an individual or with a company, or since 2008 with the state. It is however never with them.

In the world of work, employers are paying lip-service to new labor market entrants, lulling them into the rat race with seemingly attractive salaries and career opportunities, hoping a mortgage for too big a house and too big a car will retain the talented ones working their heart out. Every year, a new generation of salary slaves is born. One day they will become the lesser talented, the anal middle manager or the stale technologist, hanging on to a nonsense job for fear of being put by the bin, ready to be recycled at somebody else’s cost. Or not.

Sadly, in the world of work, the unions are fighting the wrong battle. Instead of helping to shape the future of work in a proactive and positive manner, they cling to their current power position in the only way they know how. Instead of working towards an inclusive and prosperous society in a sustainable economic framework, they revert to 19th century industrial thinking. Solely focused on self-interest, refusing to modernize the outdated labor environment, they represent the ultimate bureaucrats with an attitude and wisdom predating the digital age. Their disruption is ‘back to the past’ and ‘no future’.

There’s a third party in the world of work and that’s you. I’m happy to call you a critical thinker. The above would otherwise remain unread. In a world where resources are finite, creativity is not. I’m asking you to think and act despite of yourselves and never to go back to your old school


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