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In August, I had the pleasure of attended the WorldSkills 2015 competition in Sao Paolo Brazil, and opening the associated leadership forum with senior executives, educators and government officials from around the world.

WorldSkills? You haven’t heard of it? I came away convinced that it is one of the most important, and yet ‘under-the-radar’ global initiatives that  provides future opportunity to the next generation of student, industries and nations. I will be blogging more on my observations in the weeks to come.

For now, read this article which summarized my keynote, and catch a clip where I spoke about the challenges that come from the acceleration of the  knowledge required in the area of skilled trades.

Think Big, Start Small, Scale Fast: Futurist Jim Carroll Speaks At Worldskills Leaders Forum
(Article from the WorldSkills Web site)

On 13 August, at the WorldSkills Leaders Forum, as part of the WorldSkills Conference Programme, Jim Carroll, one of the world’s leading experts on international trends and innovation spoke on the rapid changes facing the world.

“65% of children in preschool today will work in a job that does not exist now,” announced Carroll to the approximately 450 international leaders of technical and vocational education within governments, industry, education, and unions gathered at WorldSkills São Paulo 2015 to build the global skills movement.

Carroll established that today is the era of major transformation and supremacy of big ideas. Organizations not only need to consider what their current competition will be doing in the future, but also need to assume that new entrants to their profession will reinvent the approach of businesses that operate as they have always done.

“Learning is what most adults will do for a living in the 21st century,” noted Carroll. Technology will change every element of our lives at such a rapid pace that half of what vocational students learn in their first year will be replaced with new technology knowledge in three years.

To be successful in a fast paced environment, Carroll recommended people “think big, start small, and scale fast.”

His advice to the WorldSkills community was to constantly question how the hyper connectivity offered by technology will impact the skilled careers. Carroll encouraged participants to look at the future with optimism not fear. Carroll is recognized as a thought-leader and author of “The Future Belongs to Those Who Are Fast” and “Ready, Set, Done: How to Innovate When Faster is the New Fast”.

The WorldSkills Leaders Forum is a global event on the most topical themes – based on input from WorldSkills Delegates and Members. The WorldSkills Leaders Forum event itself serves to kick-start dialogue among attendees – individuals and organizations striving to exploit and develop the power of the global network of WorldSkills to meet the needs of industry, commerce, and those who educate and train the next generation professional – to the mutual benefit of all concerned.

 

For years, I’ve spoken throughout my client base as a keynote speaker as to how the essence of global research and development is changing.This includes keynote presentations to some of the world’s leading educational associations and corporations; industry and professional conference associations; and even two events for NASA, with a number of astronauts, astrophysicists and other deep thinkers in the room!

WCGatineau

Watch a true piece of art – this time-lapse video by my 22 year old son, using a ‘time-lapse slider’ running on a Raspberry Pi, that he built by drawing upon ‘the global colloborative mind.’

My emphasis has always been that the Internet has led us to a new world of ‘crowd-thinking’ in which anyone can look at any idea, and figure out how to pursue the idea, and develop a new skill, capability, form of insight or simply a new “thing.” The foundation for crowdthinking includes crowdfunding initiatives; vast knowledge and information archives; the sharing economy, global collaborative communities and other fascinating developments. It’s a trend that is shaking up R&D efforts worldwide, because it accelerates knowledge. Ultimately, crowd-thinking is leading to some very significant change in every industry. More on that later….

No trend is complete without it ‘hitting home’ in a personal way. That’s why you need to watch this this fabulous time-lapse video, which my 22 year old son Willie Carroll painstakingly filmed, edited and pulled together over a period of over a month. Watch it here, or view his blog post about the project WcFotography.

It’s a ‘time-lapse’ video — in which Willie’s 35mm camera takes a picture using a time-lapse slider ‘machine’ that he built. The slider makes the camera moves a fraction of an inch, then waits, and then takes another picture. Repeat, several times over an hour. Stitch together multiple photos into video clips; link those together, layer on some fabulous music, and you’ve got a true piece of art. Willie built the hardware and figured out the software, by tapping into the global creative mind. You can get a basic sense of how it works below. When he first got it working — which, even though I was away at a keynote — was a truly inspiring and fabulous moment!


As an avid part-time professional photographer (see WcFotography.com) involved in corporate, wedding and other photographic shoots, Willie is always eager to push his skills to the limit.

Willie spotted the idea for a time-lapse slider when it was floated as  a KickStarter project — but at $1,000, it was a bit out of his range. He decided that he could build one on his own; he researched the project and found both the hardware and software solutions online. Through a sometimes excruciating process through the summer, he saw the project through to success. The slider was built using a Raspberry Pi computer; rails, a motor and timing belt that he sourced through eBay; and software that was developed by a fellow named David Hunt in Ireland, who ultimately provided Willie with the inspiration for his project.

Once it was finished, Willie took the rig back to university, and on weekends and during time off, visited his beloved Gatineau Park to capture a wide variety of fabulous photographic-video sequences.

As a dad, I couldn’t be prouder.

I’d encourage you to share the video — it’s posted above on Vimeo. I’d also encourage you to check out his  photography Web site. If you’re based in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada, you might consider engaging him for your next photography project!

Learn more over at http://www.wcfotography.com.

DerekSprague

“As consumer expectations for technology driven experiences increase exponentially, answering the phone and handwriting tee times onto a paper tee sheet are no longer the norms.” – Derek Sprague, President, PGA of America

In many of my keynotes focused on future trends and the necessity for constant, fast innovation, I often speak about the massive transformation occurring in most industries as the result of the acceleration of business models through technology.

Just consider the impact of Apple Pay, which speeds up the pace of change in the credit card industry; Internet-linked medical devices which allow for virtual healthcare; and Tesla Motors, which is shaking up the global auto industry.

What’s the impact? One estimate suggests that up to 40% of the S&P 500 will no longer exist ten years from now, if they fail to keep up with fast moving technology trends. That’s a pretty staggering thought.

Given this, every CEO in every industry needs to think as to how they avoid THE BIG MISS — playing up a golf analogy — and avoid the disruption occurring all around them.

While preparing for my keynote for the Sporting & Fitness Industry Association keynote, I reached out Derek Sprague, President of the PGA of America, for his observations on how technology has impacted the golf industry, and more specifically, the membership of the association, the PGA Professional. These are folks who are instrumental in the management and growth of golf courses, professional instruction on learning the game, and other aspects of a multi-faceted career. (I was the opening keynote speaker for the 94th Annual General Meeting of the PGA a few years back.)

Derek nailed it in two succinct observations:

In the last five years, video software, launch monitors and game tracking devices (like Game Golf) have brought the technology tools of elite professional players to the masses.  Understanding how to integrate volumes of performance data into traditional teaching methods has become “commonplace for PGA Professionals.”

Not only that, but yield management and mobile-oriented buying platforms aren’t just for hotels and airlines anymore.  As consumer expectations for technology driven experiences increase exponentially, answering the phone and handwriting tee times onto a paper tee sheet are no longer the norms.

That’s a pretty concise summary – the skills of the membership base has to change at a very fast pace as dealing with new technology comes to dominate an increasing aspect of their role. And it won’t end anytime soon — for example, think about how quickly drone technology will come to challenge the game in new and different ways.

Here’s a video clip from my keynote, about why it’s necessary to avoid THE BIG MISS.

 

Essentially, Jim assists in organizations in dealing with the future, trends and innovation through three distinct types of events:

  • as the opening or closing keynote speaker for the annual meetings/conferences of national or international associations
  • keynotes or workshops for private corporate leadership events, ranging from small groups of 15 to several hundred executives, often sponsored by the CEO, for a vast range of global Fortune 1000 companies
  • keynotes or panel discussions on customer oriented meetings or promotional events

Here’s a video clip from my recent keynote for the Sporting & Fitness Industry Association Leadership Summit in New Orleans; it’s from my intro where I’m speaking about how predictions from the future — involving the Jetson’s and more! — are becoming real, much faster.

It’s a great clip, and will challenge you to think how an era of accelerated transformation is changing industries, business models and more.

Video: The Nomadic Workforce
September 30th, 2015

Another clip from my “World Class Innovators” video.


Back in 1997, I coined the phrase “nomadic workers” while writing my book, Surviving the Information Age, and made these predictions:

  • The number of full time jobs has begin to dramatically shrink – yet, we are only seeing the tip of the iceberg in the change of the relationship between employer and employee, as the nomadic worker becomes the dominant form of corporate resource.
  • Companies will hire the best talent, regardless of where that person might be. A new form of career competitiveness is emerging, with extreme competition for this group of nomadic workers – highly skilled individuals who call the shots.
  • Where people work from won’t matter – a trend that has implications for the future of both rural and urban economies.
  • Lifestyle choice will come to dominate career decisions. The nomadic worker carries different attitudes towards life and work, and rejects many of the currently accepted “norms” of the corporate environment. Their attitudes will revolutionize the world of work.
  • The shape of tomorrow’s company won’t be defined by the walls in its offices – it will be defined by the reach of its computerized knowledge network, and its ability to tap into the skills and capabilities of the nomadic worker, wherever they might be.

I was pretty well bang-on with those trends!

Some years back, I worked on a project for Deloitte, which resulted in the video, “What Do World Class Innovators Do That Others Don’t Do?” It’s become a very popular video, and keynote topic. Read more about the topic here.

I’ve gone back and had a look at the raw footage, and there is some great stuff that wasn’t used in its entirety. Here’s a clip around the theme of speed,’ appropriate in an era of accelerating knowledge, rapid change in business models, new consumer expectations, the instant obsolescence of new products, and other challenges!

As a popular keynote speaker with a focus on future trends and innovation, I’m often called upon to deliver a talk that focuses on some very unique or current issues. This post will give you a sense of the types of events that I am being booked into today.

11173324_1139955206031162_1350127962545406975_n There are several key trends that continue to define my business:

  • corporate leadership meetings continue to be a big growth market – I’m often engaged by a CEO or other senior executive for an offsite meeting — on a highly customized topic. There’s more information below on some of the very unique and customized topics that I have taken on as of late.
  • economic uncertainty seems to be growing with the collapse in oil prices, the election, and ongoing questions about global economic growth. That’s a good thing — I’ve got plenty of video and blog posts around the theme of “innovating during uncertain economic times.” It led to strong bookings in 2009-2010, and I’m seeing an uptick for this type of topic again today. Global economic turmoil? Time to innovate! Read more.
  • a topic that is drawing continuing attention has to do with a new book I am working on: “Think Big, Start Small, Scale Fast“. Many companies continue to be blindsided by the speed of technology change, business model change (think Uber), empowered consumers, new competitors — you name it! This simple phrase resonates with people as a keynote topic: read more!
  • in addition, the topic of the “Internet of Things” ties into the current high velocity change occurring in every industry as Silicon Valley comes to drive the speed d of industry. Industries that have had me in on this topic include the automotive/trucking industry (Volvo / Mack Trucks), packaging/paper (Mondi International out of South Africa), energy and infrastructure (GE Lighting, Lennox, Honeywell, and Trane Ingersoll Rand), among others. Read more.

Customized keynotes

This area continues to be my biggest growth market. I truly believe that clients today are looking for much more than a canned message; they want real insight, deep research, and a highly customized message. I’ve certainly been delivering; here are a few of the unique topics that I have taken on:

  • The Future of Steel” — a keynote for the global leadership meeting of the Finnish company, Konecranes. They build the massive structures used at container ports, shipyards, railroads, oil fields and other industries. They were looking for a keynote that looked at the future of the steel industry, one of their key industry verticals. Watch for an upcoming blog post on the unique research that I undertook
  • Physician Recruitment in the Era of Digital Intimacy” – PracticeMatch is a US company that specializes in the recruitment of doctors/physicians. They were looking for a talk that would take a look at the challenges in recruiting the Millennial medical professional. They didn’t want a canned talk about this unique generation — they wanted real insight. You can read my blog post, which gives you a sense of how deeply I dug into the topic, on this blog post.
  • The Future of Risk in the Era of Big Infrastructure” — this Friday, I’m in Las Vegas with Kiewit, a North American construction company involved in massive oil, energy, highway and other infrastructure projects. More specifically, I’m with their legal team — 50 executives responsible for managing risk throughout the business. My keynote takes a look at new forms of emerging risk, given trends unfolding globally. It’s a very unique and customized topic combining future trends and legal risk — I’ll be blogging about this next week
  • The Future of Energy Infrastructure” — the topic for which GE Lighting, Lennox, Honeywell, and Trane Ingersoll Rand engaged me. This is a good example of very specific customization to an industry of the broader “Internet of Things” topic. You can read a blog post and watch video from the GE event, held in NYC, on the blog post “5 Things to Know About the Connected Future
  • The Future of Intelligent Packaging” — Mondi, a South African based organization, brought me to Prague to open their global leadership meeting. They are deep into the packaging industry in Europe, Asia, the Middle East and Africa, and wanted a talk that would help their team understand the opportunities that would unfold as packaging materials become intelligent, connected, and interactive. You won’t look at a box of Wheaties the same after you’ve thought about this topic! An Atlanta based company, Neenah Paper and Packaging, was also looking for a similar topic — which is a good example of the fact that almost every industry is being reinvented by an era of “hyperconnectivity.” There’s more here.
  • The Future of Sports and Fitness” – I admit it was a thrill to open the CEO leadership meeting for the Sporting and Fitness Industry Association — and to be followed on stage by Roger Goodell, Commission of the NFL. (I didn’t bring up Tom Brady). This booking relates to the ongoing theme of the future of health, wellness and fitness, and “Healthcare 2020” :
  • Autonomous Vehicle Technology, Self Driving Cars and Intelligent Highways” — both the Colorado Department of Transportation and Volvo have had me in to look at this extremely hot topic. You couldn’t have failed to notice stories in the news that both Google and Apple are developing self-driving vehicles. There is a seismic change underway in this massive industry, and I’ve got some great background with keynotes for major players as it unfolds. Automotive World, one of the leading global publications in the auto industry, covered my thoughts on this topic in the article, Is the Auto Industry Ready for the World of 2030. Read more.

These are just a few examples of some of the unique topics I’ve been taking on. Remember — clients are looking for real, deep, specific, customized and tailored insight.

Feel free to contact me if you want to explore some ideas!

My reputation as a speaker has been built on my ability to take on a very diverse range of very customized topics.PracticeMatch

So it was with my keynote this week for the 2015 PracticeMatch Recruitment Conference — an event geared towards physician recruiters for majors healthcare organization.

I was asked if I could provide a talk that would outline the unique challenges that these folks might face in recruiting the newly graduating Millennial physician. Most certainly — it’s a topic I cover frequently in my keynote, “What’s Happening with Our Workforce: Making Generations Work” (more).

Certainly everyone knows that the Millennial generation is different when it comes to work, career and life; there’s a wealth of statistics such as these:

  • 75% of the workforce will be dominated by Millennials by 2025
  • only 1/3 say that their current job is their career
  • 60% feel they don’t make enough money
  • 69% want more freedom at work
  • 91% expect to stay at their job < 3 years

Yet my talk went beyond such basic observations, and worked into the theme that involved a fundamental presumption: “to recruit Millennial physicians requires understanding the context of the medical system that they will working within — say, the world of healthcare in 2020 that is rapidly evolving today!”

With that, I neatly tied my “Workforce” keynote theme into my healthcare keynote theme “Healthcare 2020: The Transformative Trends That Will Really Define our Future” (more info) (health care clients and blog posts). I took a look at the scientific, technological and other trends that are providing opportunities for innovation in health care, and then put into perspective how those trends would provide for new opportunities and challenges in the recruitment of the next generation physician for hospitals. This was broken down into 4 key themes:

  • transformation
  • bio-connectivity and virtualization
  • the consumerization of healthcare
  • managing the generational disconnect

1. Transformation of healthcare

Spend some time on the healthcare section of my blog, and you’ll understand that my fundamental presumption is this: “By 2020, we will had successfully transitioned the health care system from one which ‘fixed people after they were sick’ to one of preventative, diagnostic medicine. Treating them for the conditions we know they were likely to develop.” That’s a pretty big change, and it is coming about as a result of genomic medicine, an increasing focus on wellness, rapid advances in medical device technology and other trends. Watch this video for the acceleration of genomic medicine.

My key point for the audience was that the new generation of doctors are well attuned to these trends, and would be seeking opportunities at the cutting edge of healthcare solutions. Two key quotes put into perspective their attitudes:

“Young oncologists are often more up to date in molecular genetics and other scientific advances. In addition, they are often looked to for their experience with new drugs.” Generational Difference Among Oncologists: 
Journal of Oncology Practice

Young doctors feel far less loyalty to their employer than Boomer doctors do. A new position for them may not be the start of their lifetime career as much as it is a means for building a personal – and portable – portfolio of career aspects.” Solving Problems in Medical Practice, Journal of Medical Practice Management, August 2013

What’s the impact on Millennial physician recruitment?

  • they will be seeking cutting edge research, experience and opportunities for innovative healthcare solutions
  • they’ll have a greater focus on wellness, patient consultation, and new business models
  • and maybe it is evolving into a situation in which the “Uber” generation meets healthcare!

2. Bio-connectiivty and virtualization of healthcare

The hospital as we know it is going to disappear; it is going virtual through the extension of sophisticated medical device technology. Watch this video for my thoughts on this massive trend.

I’ve been talking about the concept of bio-connectivity for almost 20 years. Consider this blog post. This trend is rapidly unfolding now.

By applying biosensors to the body, we can measure any physiologic metric—blood pressure, glucose, oxygen concentration in the blood—and send the data wirelessly through smartphones to doctors. The Wireless Revolution Hits Medicine Wall Street Journal, February 2013

“Imagine a far more extreme transformation, in which advances in IT, biology and engineering allow us to move much of health care out of hospitals, clinics and doctors offices, and into our everyday lives.” Our high-tech health care future New York Times, 10 Nov 2011

The real impact is simple, as I outlined in this chart:

HealthVirtualization

Quite simply, we’re moving at an accelerating pace towards the virtualization of healthcare, and this has a big impact on recruitment of the next generation physician:

  • they’ll choose hospitals that are at the cutting edge of implementation of new technologies and methodologies
  • the result is that ‘innovation in healthcare’ will be a key recruitment attribute – health institutions that are real innovators will have the greatest potential for success
  • given that, this is not just a recruitment issue – it’s an institution culture/leadership issue!

3. The Consumerizaton of Healthcare

The centuries old relationship between doctor and patient is changing” – that’s also a key phrase that I’ve been using for close to 20 years. Quite obviously, people have been getting more involved with their health over the last two decades, particularly as a result of technology. The trend is now accelerating at a furious pace as a result of mobile devices linked to health care apps, and healthcare devices such as the Withings WiFi blood pressure monitor.

“The trend towards self-quantification, enabled by wearable devices and health apps, has also transformed the ability of patients to monitor and improve their own health” How Millennials are Reshaping Health & Wellness
Quirks Marketing Research, Sept 2015

In that context, the next generation doctor will have a new relationship with a patient:

“While man’s best fired has always been the dog, the millennials best friend is the mobile phone”
Using Technology to Recruit Medical Millennials, Medsource Consultants, Sept. 2015

The impact on recruitment? New, consultative business models, such as :

  • shared medical appointments or “group visits”
  • “open notes” – shared medical records / consultations
  • shared decision making – evaluating multiple treatment options and consulting on best course of action

 

  • they will adopt new methodologies and technologies as fast as their patients do
    R&D budgets, freedom to push the boundaries, new-frontier oriented projects are critical
    promise of a consultative patient relationship critical

4. Generational acceleration

And of course, the simple fact is that this next generation is just fundamentally different when it comes to careers. A few key bullets from my presentation:

  • they want to move quickly up the ranks — little patience for ‘putting in the hours’ or paying the dues (XBOX generation!)
  • they have little patience for administrative clogging and paperwork — an instant, Amazon type of recruitment experience necessary
  • connectivity is critical to their professional skills base — access to shared collaborative physician social networks is a good example of what this social network generation of medical professional will see
  • not only that, faster patient handoff is part of their culture – it’s the multitasking generation!

Other key career issues?

  • mentorship is crucial
  • work-life balance (60% top rated in one survey)\
  • teamwork and collaborative structure using new career partners (hospitalists, nurse practitioners, etc)
  • part time positions (impact of gender demographic shift – 25% of female physicians 30-40 work part time, compared to 2% for males)

And herein lies the challenge: there is a massive cultural gap in hospitals and health care institutions, wherein Baby Boomers in charge look down on the attitudes of this younger generation. I dug out this key example during my research:

Roger Lyons, MD, a managing partner of a 28-physician oncology group in San Antonio, Texas, graduated from medical school in 1967. He paints this picture of his generation of physicians: “In my era people went into medicine for the love of it. Most people had a passion for taking care of patients—that’s what they lived for. Whatever else was going on was always secondary.”

Yet His description of many young physicians is in stark contrast: “What we see now are people whose first interest is how many days off they get in a week, how many weekends they have to cover, how much vacation they get, and whether they have to take call in the evening.”

I asked the audience, how can you possibly hope to recruit the Millennial physician with such attitudes in place? I pointed out that:

  • there is a massive organizational cultural issue that needs to be solved (boomers extreme frustration with Millennials attitude!)
  • cross generational collaboration will drive successful recruitment efforts (“you can’t dismiss them and recruit them”)

Overall, it was a great, fun keynote with a lot of great feedback. I look forward to doing my similar customized events in the future.

GE Lighting

Jim Carroll speaking at a GE Lighting event in New York City: “When it comes to lighting, we’re in the era of revolutionary new opportunities. The potential for significant efficiency and cost savings through deep analytical insight into usage patterns, and detailed, specific-spot addressability and management is real.”

Back in May, I participated in a key customer event for GE Lighting in New York City. Here’s a quick little article summary, and video, which captured my thoughts on the future of intelligent lighting and connected infrasucture.

5 Things to Know About the Connected Future
By Jim Carroll

When it comes to acceleration, we live in one of the most fascinating periods in history where the rate of technology change is absolutely staggering.

So what trends are driving this acceleration, and how are smart businesses adapting to not only survive but thrive in an ever-connected world? Read on to learn 5 things to know about the connected future—and how you can stay ahead.

Acceleration: Today’s is the slowest day of technology change for the rest of your life.

Bill Gates once observed that most people tend to overestimate the rate of change that’s going to occur in a two-year basis, but underestimate the rate of change that will occur in a 10-year basis. A few years ago I used to speak about 3D printing as if it were science fiction. Now it’s part of many businesses day-to-day operations.

In the not-so-distant future, we will likely have connectivity in cars that researches 3-bedroom, 2-bath homes for sale in your neighborhood, and then drives you directly to each house for a tour. We already have augmented reality displays built into ski visors and goggles that tell you, in real-time, how fast and far you’ve skied -this same technology will be integrated into automobiles in the not-too-distant future.

It’s important to be ready for this acceleration. Your opportunity in dealing with this is continuing to ingest new ideas, new technologies and new methodologies to solve problems.

Hyper-Connectivity….and endless possibilities.

Every industry is set to be transformed as an era of hyper-connectivity becomes the new norm. The result? Massive business model disruption; industries in which customers empowered with mobile devices control a wide variety of devices that are a part of their daily lives; unique opportunities for deep analytical insight into trends and opportunities emerging in industries; and a reinvention of manufacturing, logistics, retail, healthcare and other industries because of consumers that are empowered, connected and enabled with a new form of lifestyle management that we’ve never witnessed before.

Every device that is part of our daily life is becoming plugged into the Internet. We are becoming aware of its location and its status. And while this has been a trend for awhile, it is today’s businesses that are primed to turn this momentum into big wins.

By the year 2020, there will be more than 50 billion devices connected to the Internet. That’s roughly six devices per person.

The Internet of Things is happening everywhere, it is real, and it is unfolding at a blistering pace. We’re in the era of connected thermostats that link to an intelligent energy grid; autonomous vehicle technology that is self-aware and networked into sophisticated, intelligent highway flow control systems; a connected trucking fleet that is self-diagnostic, predictive and built for zero down-time.

We have scales that record our body mass index, transmit it to a password-protected website and create custom charts on our health. We have ceiling fans that will slow down when owners go to sleep. We have barbeques that send us text messages when the meat needs to be flipped.

These are staggering trends, and what is means is the possibilities are endless for growth and innovation.

Momentum & the potential for big wins.

When it comes to lighting, we’re in the era of revolutionary new opportunities. The potential for significant efficiency and cost savings through deep analytical insight into usage patterns, and detailed, specific-spot addressability and management is real.

New LED technologies change our very concept of lighting and individual addressability at the level of the light bulb leads us to an era that is unlike anything we’ve ever known. Consider these statistics:

Right now, lighting accounts for 12-15% of annual global power consumption, creating 1.7 billion tons of CO2 emissions per year.
According to the International Energy Agency, improving lighting efficiency by 20% can reduce total power consumption by 3.8% and cut total CO2 emissions by 0.8 percent.
According to industry reports, the global LED lighting marketing is expected to grow from $7 billion in 2010 to $40 billion in 2016.

There is so much momentum behind these changes because the potential for big wins are huge.

The next generation

Today’s younger generation—those under age 25—have never known a world without a mobile device that lets them access incredible amounts of information at their fingertips. They are globally wired, entrepreneurial, collaborative…and they thrive on change.

Gone are the days of MS Dos copy and computer courses like Cobalt. This generational trend is crucial to businesses that need to communicate with customers and employees that are used to receiving information in vastly different ways. Additionally, this generation is starting to drive rapid business model change and industry transformation as they move into executive positions.

According to author Cathy Davidson, 65% of children today will work in a career that has doesn’t yet exist. Think about titles like “water usage audit analysts,” energy usage audit architects,” and “location intelligence professionals.” We are at the forefront of a remarkable time in history as the next generation uses connectivity to advance some of the biggest energy successes.

The Future Belongs to Those Who Are Fast

As new technology, intelligent lighting and infrastructure emerge, the key phrase businesses need to remember is to Think Big, Start Small and Scale Fast. Take on a small-scale, experimental project in you municipality, industrial location or retail store. Test out a new technology with a target group of customers.

By starting small and learning to scale fast, you can adopt an innovation mantra and build a business plan that leads to success.