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Letters to a Young Manager


Watch Your Kids, #63
LTYM > Strategy



Dear Sophie,
***
Were do I see technology going? That's a "crystal ball" question. If you look back 15 years, there are a dozen new tech companies with new product that now dominate the Internet [1]. Who forecast that?

When my son was sixteen, a few years ago, I asked whether he got my email; he said he didn’t know. When he logged onto Hotmail to check, he found his email account had expired! How could that be? “I don’t use email; we use IM.” “Why do you have an email account,” I asked. His answer, “you need one to sign up for IM!”

Rather than ask "what's your forecast," ask "who's your forecast?" Watch what you kids (or nieces or nephews) are doing to connect with their friends and get their homework done. That's where technology is going.
***
Best,
Ed
________________________

[1] 13 of 16 companies that dominate the Internet were founded since 2002; 7 since 2008. See Jeff Desjardins, "What Happens in an Internet Minute in 2016?," Visual Capitalist, April 25, 2016, http://www.visualcapitalist.com/what-happens-internet-minute-2016/ Also see the periodically updated presentation by Colorado High School students on their view of the world and technology, "Shift Happens," 2006-2011. Here is the 2016 edition updated by Jose Esteves, a professor in Madrid, : "Did You Know 2016," https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uqZiIO0YI7Y

Moral of story:

Watch the next generation

Discussion Questions:

1) What do you see kids doing with technology today (including games?)
2) How do kids get their questions answered? Ask one to solve a problem and follow their approach. [e.g., Story #432]
3) What technologies are kids abandoning?
4) Same question for today's start-up companies: what tech are they using and not using?
5) How far can a new company get with free software?

For Further Reading:





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