Current interests

Photo courtesy of ©iStockphoto.com/DrAfter123

Beyond work related topics, there are a number of other topics that also interest me at the moment, including:

  1. Ideas, innovation and creativity, both individually and collectively, including crowdsourcing
  2. Disruptive technology and disruptive business strategies
  3. Social media developments, and how they impact communication and collaboration
  4. Globalisation and Capitalism 2.0 (or 3.0, etc. – whatever you want to call it …)
  5. ‘Popular sociology/psychology’ (eg, topics raised by Malcolm Gladwell and others)

There are others also, like the re-design of education, the environment, etc. which also capture my attention, but the ones above seem to be currently top of my attention. For a while previously, language translation technology was also a ‘hot topic’ that interested me (reflected in a number of blog posts on this topic) – I still monitor that topic, but not currently with the same level of interest as the points listed above.

While I mentioned at the outset of this post that these are topics that interest me in addition to work related topics, there is no doubt that these topics are partly also related to the future of business and the development of the global economic environment.

Interestingly (to me!) it seems that the topics are all somehow connected also – for example:

  • Ideas, innovation and creativity lead to disruptive potential and social media developments
  • Social media developments lead to more creativity, with greater collaboration on ideas (intended and unintended/indirect)
  • Disruptive business strategies, and  are leading to Capitalism 2.0
  • Social media is making the world more connected, leading to increasing globalisation
  • Popular sociology/psychology underlies all of the other topics, through increased desire to understand what motivates people to act and respond the way they do

Sources of good discussion and points of view on these topics – websites, blogs and Twitter

One can find a lot of material on the internet, to read around these topics, follow links to new sites, new discussions, etc. I generally find this a more interesting alternative to watching television, albeit the boundaries are blurring, with more video options appearing on the internet (nevertheless, on demand, and a far wider range of sources).

TED, and the many other conference and video sharing sites are a great source for discussions on these topics, as are also many blogs. In fact, on the whole, it seems to me that it is often the private, individual perspectives on these topics that provide the most interesting, well-developed and broadest thinking around the topics.

That’s not to say however that corporate organisations (eg, professional service/advisory firms, consultancies, media organizations, etc.) aren’t also interested in getting involved, and benefitting also from these discussions – they do, and some of them also make a good go of it, providing some polished, interesting thought leadership.

These topics, as well as work related topics, personal relationships and other ‘regular’ interests (eg, news/current affairs, sport, etc.), are reflected in the people who I currently ‘follow’ on Twitter. It is often those people who bring the most diverse, and interesting updates on the topics listed, very much bringing the joy of serendipity – a word that I somehow quite like ;-).

It seems to me, through tweets and retweets by other people who are clearly also passionate on these topics, one is introduced to sources of discussion which one would otherwise likely not have found – ultimately, the true power of Twitter as a news/media tool.

Next steps

I’ve thought about writing blog posts on some of these topics, and will likely do so, but these tend to be topics where I am still reading, still compiling my own point of view, etc. On these topics there is a lot of discussion going on, and many frequent new developments.

Of course however, while possibly enjoyable, just being well-read on a topic is wasteful – in my mind, it only really makes a difference if you:

  • contribute to the global discussion (ie, on Twitter, or via a blog),
  • use the knowledge and awareness to drive your thinking and actions in your personal- or work- lives, or
  • raise the discussion more locally (eg, in face-to-face conversations with friends, colleagues/co-workers, etc.), where there is interest to do so.

I aim to do the first and second of these points, and look forward to the latter, with anyone who is interested in such a discussion.

Have you come across anything interesting on the above topics?  Maybe you can add a comment below, with a link, or contact me on Twitter (@matthewdbenson).

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