This week we'll be guiding our exclusive cohort of 70+ leaders to explore and envision possible futures to prepare them to take that knowledge and passion back to their lives, companies, and communities.
The Singularity Executive Program, as Peter Diamandis said in our Moonshots Fireside chat, is the best time to "give yourself permission to go into areas that are not comfortable." Stepping outside your comfort zone is uncomfortable – it's designed to be that way. 5, 20, 50 years from now, what will your life look like? What will your purpose be?
Creating a better world will require leaders who have the necessary skill set to think beyond what is possible and explore frameworks that allow them to see the future, understand exponential technologies and build a framework for change. The pandemic has shown that leading with uncertainty causes human struggle, but pushing past the discomfort of the unknown enables you to look at your current systems and processes and ask... “what if?”
Day Zero of the program is about helping our current cohort of leaders gain the foundation and primers needed to start shifting their mindset and rethink what is possible.
We kicked the night off with a primer on exponential technologies with Aaron Frank and Ja-Nae Duane, our program’s moderators. Peter Diamandis helped expand upon the key concepts with his talk on the mindset shift needed to go from thinking linearly or exponentially. Participants also got to hear from Amanda Manna, Singularity’s head of Strategic Narrative. Throughout the week, she will work with participants to help them envision a possible future and develop their own mini strategic narrative on how they can make change through daily workshops.
Our fireside chat for night one was all about thinking big through mindset changes and moonshots with Steve Leonard (Singularity CEO), Peter Diamandis (Co-founder & Chairman of Singularity), and Naveen Jain. Below are a few of our favorite takeaways from the conversation.
According to Steve, we've seen an exciting shift over the past year in the global conversation and perception around creating solutions that address significant societal issues. We are seeing people around the globe starting to feel the urgency to act now as we move towards a future where we live longer and push ourselves on what it means to be human. Entrepreneurs and investors are starting to see the opportunity that exists when you can create meaningful improvements for both people and the planet.
Steve noted the importance of acknowledging the difficult choices leaders have when choosing to focus on creating impact and solving the world’s “unsolvable” problems. It's essential to have passionate and focused leaders working on these issues, but when it seems impossible, leaders need to have the courage to stand up and acknowledge that they don't know. That kind of vulnerability is crucial to the mindset changes where leaders are willing to say they are not the smartest person in the room. The future is collaborative and requires leaders with unique skill sets working together to make change. Cultivating that skill set is just as important as being able to envision the future.
Do not be afraid of not knowing. Be afraid of not asking.
Exponential technologies have allowed humanity not just to have "crazy ideas" but to scale those ideas quickly. As humans, we desire to do things that matter, which Peter refers to as your Massive Transformative Purpose (MTP). He encouraged participants to think of their MTP as their canvas and their Moonshot as the painting.
We are living in one of the most exciting times in history. We're constantly seeing new technologies and industries created from ideas that 10-20 years ago would have been deemed impossible. As Peter often says, "the day before something is a breakthrough, it's a crazy idea." He further broke down his famous quote by adding that if participants look at all the breakthroughs out there, they'll notice that innovators who turn crazy ideas into reality have one key thing in common: they're rebels. They look at the world differently. They're willing to think beyond the system and take risks that enable for a better future that sometimes only they can see.
How do you know when an idea isn't just a crazy idea but an MTP or a Moonshot?
Both Peter and Naveen agreed that passion only gets you so far. A true Moonshot will leave you obsessed. These Moonshot ideas are meaningful to the world and seek to impact a billion people. They're not small, incremental ideas. Moonshots should keep you up at night, knowing that if you don't work towards this goal or vision, you will deny yourself and the rest of the world a better future.
When we think about what skill sets will be necessary for future leaders, we believe they will need to be many things but, most importantly, curious and resilient. There will always be new technology and ideas waiting to disrupt the reality we've grown comfortable with. In a world where everything is changing rapidly, shifting your mindset from “survive” to “thrive” is vital.
If you’re ready to learn how exponential technology and future trends will transform your company, community or country, join us at our next Executive Program cohort in March to explore and envision your possible futures.