I’m a context guy. What I mean by that is I like to must see the big picture. Some might call it the bottom line. Whatever. If I don’t see the greater context, I struggle with listening to the details. It’s like some form of torture, where I’ve been tied to a chair and have to listen to the endless explanation of some fraction of a micro-concept. Just mind-numbing.
So, for me to explain myself better in this blog (and continue the revolution), I have to set the context. For the blog. For my whole philosophy. For the modern profession of selling.
And the context is this.
We are the lucky few, in the entire history of mankind, who have been given the chance to live through MASSIVE change. And not just change, but literally a global shift in what we commonly call “ages.”
Pause. Think about that for a moment. We use the term “ages” to describe some pretty cool things. The Stone Age. The Iron Age. The Age of Reason. The Age of Aquarius (sorry – I couldn’t resist).
Ages transcend generations. They transcend geopolitical boundaries. Shucks, they don’t just transcend them – they transform them. And economies, too. Which is why I’m going there (since this is a mostly-sales blog).
So back to the rant topic at hand. As the infographic below shows (Lord, I hope it got attached – don’t even get me started on my technical deficiencies. Starting this blog was hard enough), the most recent ages we have dealt with (and was prominently displayed for us at the Opening Ceremony of the London Olympics) are the Agrarian Age (from as early as 10,000 BC to the early 1700’s AD), which gave way to the Industrial Age (from the mid 1700’s AD to late 1900’s AD), which has now given way to the Information Age (late 1900’s AD to current). Or as the Olympics tried to brainwash tell us, enabled digital technology so that we could listen to British rock (and since U2 is Irish, I say “rubbish” to the whole lot).
What’s the big deal? Simple. The transition from Agrarian Age to Industrial Age was full of upheaval. Some might even say it was chaotic. And that is the point I am making now. About the current transition. From Industrial Age to Information Age, that is.
You see, every time I hear some leader try to tell me how to leverage an Industrial Age solution to make an Information Age problem go away, I think to myself, “This guy’s trying to sell me a loom. An honest to goodness LOOM. With steam-powered attachments.” I shudder even now as I think about it. What in Miss Molly’s underwear drawer are they thinking?! Get away from me, 1900’s thinking! And take your pencils, telegraph, and sales funnel with you! You are just creating more chaos. Clearly, sir (or madam), you do not understand the chaos of the current Age.
And how does one understand this chaos? By understanding the threads that create it. By looking at the patterns that appear in each age and analyzing how the patterns have evolved. By identifying where old rules have become outdated so that new rules can take their place.
Since I am not some full-blown futurist, I can only speak to the threads that tie directly to generating revenue in the swirling mass of today’s chaos. And of those, I would like to highlight the following six topics:
- The economic philosophy (of each age)
- The key economic generator (of each age)
- Where to find customers (in each age)
- The phases of labor (of each age)
- The target of innovation (for each age)
- The source of energy and thrust (in each age)
Obviously, you can see some of my thoughts already in the infographic that I hope was successfully added to this post (I’m still twitching from the g-force on my learning curve here). But I will also tackle each topic individually, sharing my own observations and dumb-luck discoveries research, over the coming weeks. My hope is that by understanding how the chaos works, we can all begin to harness it. And actually enjoy it for a change.
I mua… Onward and upward.