Change after change after change. The creative industry is seeing more change and faster every day. If you’re not careful, all this change could leave you behind. The following are some tips on how to stay ahead of the game.
- We’re Drowning in Information, While Starving for Wisdom. — E.O. Wilson
- The world henceforth will be run by synthesizers, people able to put together the right information at the right time, think critically about it, and make important choices wisely. — E.O. Wilson.
- Become Friends with People Who Aren’t Your Age. Hang Out with People Whose First Language Isn’t the Same as Yours. Get to Know Someone Who Doesn’t Come from Your Social Class. This is How You See the World. This is How You Grow. — Rotary Club
- Diversity is forming the future
- It opens your mind
- Bake it In, Don’t Bolt it On
- Mix in diverse insights and technologies right up front
- Failing to do so, will only create a Frankenstein later
- Fall Seven Times, Stand Up Eight. — Japanese Proverb
- Perseverance is worth more than intelligence
- Can’t be afraid to move forward and fail, or you’ll fail for sure
- Prepare for Free Agent Nation
- The gig economy of Uber and Lyft is overtaking creativity
- You may want to create 3-4 revenue streams for yourself
- Nothing Is Harder on Your Laurels than Resting on Them
- Creativity Requires the Courage to Let Go of Certainties. — Erich Fromm
- Be Stupid. — Renzo Rosso, Founder of Diesel Clothing Line
- Stay open to life
- Dump your assumptions
- No One Else Knows What They’re Doing Either. – Ricky Gervais
- Relax, we’re all figuring this stuff out
- But do be figuring it out!
- Courage is the Ladder on which All Other Virtues Mount.
— Clare Boothe Luce
- All Progress Depends on the Unreasonable Man.
– George Bernard Shaw
- a) Original thinking is the coin of the realm
- b) It’s what your clients pay for
- Here’s to the Crazy Ones… (Full Copy)
Welcome to Episode 10 of Navigating the Fustercluck—a podcast full of snackable insights to help you navigate the love/hate world of creativity.
My name is Wegs, like eggs with a W, joining you from Deaf Mule Studios in Dallas, and whether you work in advertising, design, gaming, fine art, commercial art, content creation, whatever it may be, we’re here to talk about how to futureproof yourself. It’s a rapidly changing world out there, and you’ve got to be prepared to ride the waves.
So just how exactly can you futureproof yourself. There is no one way, but here are a bunch of ideas that will point you forward.
They say that the best way to predict the future is to create it. With so many positions being made obsolete, training yourself in new areas could make the difference between a promotion or a layoff. You may even discover a new career path that you enjoy even more. Become a lifelong learner, because your education doesn’t stop with your degree. As my good friend Arnold Penney used to say in his 90’s, “Here’s the future!”
We’re Drowning in Information, While Starving for Wisdom. — E.O. Wilson
Too much of a good thing. That’s what today’s abundance of data has become. Too much. In fact, the more we come to know, it seems the less we actually do know. It’s like a book full of random words that fails to tell a story. Then again, it may also be your opportunity:
The world henceforth will be run by synthesizers, people able to put together the right information at the right time, think critically about it, and make important choices wisely. — E.O. Wilson.
Bottomline: data without analysis and insights is nice and worthless.
Become Friends with People Who Aren’t Your Age. Hang Out with People Whose First Language Isn’t the Same as Yours. Get to Know Someone Who Doesn’t Come from Your Social Class. This is How You See the World. This is How You Grow. — Rotary Club
If I’ve got to explain the value of diversity to you at this point, put this down and start punching yourself in the face. Then move on to your midsection and proceed with some organ-crunching body blows.
Bake It In, Don’t Bolt It On
Whether it’s Digital, Social, Experiential, Multicultural or another tool that ends with the letters “a” and “l,” consider them all from the gitgo instead of some sort of aftermarket parts. Only then– when you bake things in, instead of bolting them on afterwards– will you start to create more holistic ideas and see better results, rather than presenting the world with some sort of awkward Frankenstein creatures.
Fall Seven Times, Stand Up Eight.
— Japanese Proverb
In another life, I was the Director of Marketing for the Houston Rockets basketball team. My first year, we had the overall first pick of the draft. With it, we drafted 7’6” Yao Ming from China. When I asked the man who made the pick what sealed the deal with Yao, he responded in his long Texas drawl, Wegs, you can’t teach height. Neither can you teach people to care. Or to persevere. Being smart is table stakes, outworking the other guy is what makes most successful people.
Prepare for Free Agent Nation
In an industry that tends to bill by the hour, reducing hours and overhead is becoming the prime directive of creative managers everywhere. That means freelance is on the rise. If you market yourself well, you may make more money with more flexibility. Or maybe you won’t. That’s why it’s a good idea to have a minimum 3-4 revenue streams. Yep, side hustles are coming front and center.
Nothing Is Harder on Your Laurels than Resting on Them
Your competition is right on your heels. And in free agent nation you have to keep moving. Keep climbing up and keep moving forward. Stop, and someone will pass you. Lap you. Now once in a while, do pause and take a deep breath. Smell the proverbial roses. But be quick about it. Because it’s never been more true than today: You’re only as good as your last job.
Nothing is original…
Steal from anywhere that resonates with inspiration or fuels your imagination. Devour old films, new films, music, books, paintings, photographs, poems, dreams, random conversations, architecture, bridges, street signs, trees, clouds, bodies of water, light and shadows. Select only things to steal from that speak directly to your soul. If you do this, your work (and theft) will be authentic. Authenticity is invaluable; originality is nonexistent. — Jim Jarmusch
Creativity Requires the Courage to Let Go of Certainties. — Erich Fromm
Certainties lead to rules. Traditions. Customs. Things you’re supposed to follow. Lines you’re not to cross. Just the kind of conformity that the great artists rebel against. For those who make their mark are the ones who open our eyes. Our minds. And sometimes even our hearts.
Be Stupid. — Renzo Rosso, Founder of Diesel Clothing Line
Be Stupid for Successful Living, says Renzo in his text of the same title.
In the plays of Shakespeare, the wisest character was often the fool. The court jester. The idiot. The one who the high & mighty looked down upon because of his supposed lack of wisdom. Yet in reality, the fool was not a fool at all. In the court of pompous kings, preening queens, and less than noble noblemen, the fool was actually the wise one. The unpretentious one who paid more attention to the world than himself.
No One Else Knows What They’re Doing Either. – Ricky Gervais
Fake it til you make it. No one is really ready for all they’re being asked to do.
As Carrie Fisher said…
Stay Afraid, But Do It Anyway. What’s Important is the Action. You Don’t Have to Wait to be Confident. Just Do it and Eventually the Confidence Will Follow.
Courage is the Ladder on which All Other Virtues Mount. — Clare Boothe Luce
Or as Maya Angelou said: Courage is the most important of all virtues, because without courage you can’t practice any other virtue consistently. All true, but not easy. Courage is a muscle. One you have to work out day by day until it’s good and strong. And when you fail– and there will be times that you will– keep working it. Even if others don’t always see your way.
Let’s Take a Short Breather… (EXHALE.)
…We’re here at Deaf Mule Studios to remind everyone that this is Navigating the Fustercluck. And I’m Wegs, your world-weary host hoping that you can avoid many of the mistakes I’ve made during my otherwise adventurous career. Now back to the broadcast, or narrowcast with not one, but two final thought on how to futureproof yourself. And again, it won’t be easy but this is important…
All Progress Depends on the Unreasonable Man. — George Bernard Shaw
The Reasonable Man Adapts Himself to the World; the Unreasonable One Persists in Trying to Adapt the World to Himself. Therefore, All Progress Depends on the Unreasonable Man.
Don’t be belligerent. Do be an original thinker. Original thinking is the coin of the realm. It’s what your clients pay for. As Franz Kafka said, There are some things one can only achieve by a deliberate leap in the opposite direction. Showing a new direction to take is how you solve your clients’ problems. Even if outsiders think you’re crazy.
Here’s to the Crazy Ones…
The Misfits, the Rebels, the Troublemakers, the Round Pegs in the Square Holes… the Ones Who See Things Differently—They’re Not Fond of Rules… And they have no respect for the status quo. You Can Quote Them, disagree with Them, Glorify or Vilify Them, But the Only Thing You Can’t Do is Ignore Them Because They Change Things… They Push the Human Race Forward, and While Some may may see them as the crazy ones, we See Genius, Because the Ones Who Are Crazy Enough to Think They Can Change the World, Are the Ones Who Do.
— Steve Jobs
Well, that about wraps up our 10th episode of Navigating the Fustercluck.
I’m your host, Wegs, like eggs with a W, here at Deaf Mule Studios. And that indeed is our10th, that’s right, our 10th show. Thanks for listening in. Until then, please feel free to reach out to us on Twitter at Navigating F.
We’re all in this together, so thanks for doing your best. Here’s to you. Here’s to the future.