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TEDx and the NWoW

TEDxBrussels 2014 (seen through NWoW eyes)

In a tweet earlier this week, Isabel De Clercq from Wolters Kluwer challenged me to write (for their Yammer NWoW community) something about the most important takeaways of TEDxBrussels


The question got my interest, was it only because it forced me into thinking about a perspective that was NOT the traditional TEDxBrussels focus… (this year’s theme was The Territory & The Map). But, admittedly, many of the topics of the day could relate in some ways to our new ways of working. My key takeaways:


Part of the morning sessions was devoted to Silicon Valley, the heart (and guts) of entrepreneurship. Of course, there is no requirement for everyone at work to be an (intra/entre)preneur, but entrepreneurial skills will take us further! Further down the road of (un)certainity, by placing your bets more intelligently, achieving greatness by “tilting the board” as @talbot would put it…


Further down the road of autonomy and responsibility, by deliberately, hardheadedly pursuing your own way, the way @fredd did when dropping out of school, then developing a great digital career before the term was even fashionable…


Whilst TED always brings a panorama of exciting and promising technologies, a few speakers including @gleonhard and @mikko were there to remind us of technology’s dangers… Maybe there is no big brother watching us, maybe it’s worse, maybe there’s always ‘some’ brother watching us!


And maybe there is no such thing as ethics in our (brave) new world. Maybe Google is Evil, after all (or redefining the very meaning of the word) despite their slogan. Maybe artificial intelligence and deep learning will render most of our work meaningless (because we will be surpassed by technology), as data strategist @jeremyphoward explained convincingly (demo included).



In science or at work, the status quo is not acceptable, the traditional (corporate/government-funded) approach is not acceptable, the single-minded view of traditional research is not acceptable anymore! From health care (dancer-scientist @lina_colucci) to space travel (astronaut-to-be Cameron Smith), the future is emerging across industries and disciplines, from crowdsourced solutions, low cost, through hacking and open innovation…



Are we present? Are we too superficial? Are we designing for the right audience, the right purpose? Very valid questions by designthinker @tristanharris — reminescent of Simon Sinek’s Start With Why — with a strong focus on Quality of Life…


Of course, this is just a partial (and partisan) reading. Not a complete view. But even if fragmented, doesn’t it strike anyone that the above are all very valid statements for the New World of Work? Isn’t it about going to the essence, the Why of our work, hacking the current environment for the better, building on the (b)right technologies, improving quality of life, and, in this encouraging environment, nurturing our intrapreneurial skills? — @cdn

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