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Class Introduction

Lesson 1 from: Courage, Creativity and the Power of Change

Beth Comstock

Class Introduction

Lesson 1 from: Courage, Creativity and the Power of Change

Beth Comstock

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Lesson Info

1. Class Introduction

Meet Beth Comstock: in her words, change is her job. Creativity and change are necessary for innovation and Beth shares how to close the imagination gap to cultivate emergent change. Learn how this course is structured and what you’ll learn.

Lesson Info

Class Introduction

thank you all for taking time today. We got a lot to cover. I appreciate your being here. Can I give you an introduction about me a little bit more? I made my way in business that somebody who had to figure out what's new and next I had to learn to meet change early on the companies that I work for, it helped us find Ah, clean tech, the digitization of media and industry. It helped generate billions of dollars of revenue brand value. And so I had to make change my job. It doesn't mean I always liked change or that I was always good, good at it. But change is essential and necessary, and that's what I want to talk about today. The power of change and getting ready and really why I am here is because I think we need more people in organizations in the world who were fighting for what's next and new, willing to kind of imagine new possibilities in the world, the nature of changes changing. And I think that's one of the messages I really wanna hit home. I think we look at the intersection ...

of technology and globalization. They're just more places for change to emerge, and it's seemingly emerges overnight. It disrupts us before we even know what what's happened. Ah, it's showing up in more places. Small, indiscernible shifts suddenly become game changers in literally the blink of an eye. Um, here's a sobering thing to think about. The world will never be slower than it is right now, so we can all celebrate together. We're sharing this moment together and the next one and the next one. Ah, the futurist Ray Kurzweil said that in the 21st century we won't have something like 100 years of change. It will be more like 20,000 years of change just in this century. And, um, here's a sobering statistic for anyone who works in a company 75 years. 50 years ago, the average life expectancy of a company with 75 years Today it's 15. Think of a company that just celebrated its 15th birthday. Facebook, Um, think about the changes that it's already seen and what what it will see going forward. So I think about change a lot. I summon up science and thats forward. Um, I think the kind of change we're seeing in the world right now is what I call emergent change this idea that changes happening in so many different places at once that new patterns emerge kind of built on scientific principles. But what it means is, as I said earlier, were disrupted. And if we're not careful, we'll get left behind. Um, and when you think about it, we humans are adaptation champions. That's what makes us human our ability to imagine, Yeah, I think we all have to think about how much we're. Are we actually being encouraged to use our creativity and our imagination to make the future to shape the future? Um, I'm worried in business. I think we've got much more focused on process optimization efficiency. I worry that it's squeezing the imagination out of us, giving us less places to think about what's new and really squeezing a lot of our ability to try things and take risks just squeezing it out of us. So I think for me, what I learned is the truth is I worked for a big company that spent a lot of time in getting rid of imperfection. And trust me, some of these programs are really important But it can also sort of damage the human spirit at work. The need for creativity and courage And what I worry and companies is that West we're optimizing. Perhaps we're not prioritizing creativity and creative problem solving. Um, and it made me think of of a statistic I read. I lost the attribution of it, but it's still relevant. Researchers found that 75% of people in the Western world say they're not creatively challenged in their work. Thats a sobering statistic. It could be someone you work with. It potentially could be you. And so I think we all have to face into it. It reminded me of a story, uh, of ah in my lunch room, where the company I worked and there was a table of people who sat at the same table every day and they called themselves the table of lost Dreams. Okay, They called themselves this and they were quite a clever group of people. They were very funny. They told jokes, usually at the expense of anyone who dared walked by. There was kind of a hazing, as you first showed up at the at the company. Um, and they were very cynical. But, you know, I came to realize they weren't very funny. They were actually quite sad because along the way the creativity, the spark, the ability to take risk had been sort of squeezed out of them and the inspiration was lost. So the truth is, I think when we when we start to squeeze out our humanness at work, were squeezing out our inspiration, our imagination and I I think of it as the imagination gap and to me, I think it's one of the issues that we're facing into in the world, but especially in our business places. What is the imagination gap to me? It's the place in our organisations where possibility for the future goes to die because we're in this new world where lots of changes emerging. Ah, lot of complex things that we haven't encountered before and we need creative problem solving to find our way through it. Yet what do we do? We go back to the way we've always done things that tried the true What's even Mawr? In this age of data, we we wait for more data to tell us what to dio. You know, there's always more data. Always more always a checklist, always something to give a certainty. Yet often the answers are in things we've never tried before. And so really, I'm here to say, How do we summoned more of our creative problem solving? It's really what I mean by imagination to kind of make the future to take risks, to figure out How do we How do we go forward? I use imagination gap because I had a reason to talk to the CIA and part of my career, and they really opened themselves up, bringing in people like me from business to have them think about change and think about the C I A. Back after 9 11 you may recall there was a commission to sort of figure out How did we miss this? How did terrorism take a new route that we don't know? We were surprised by it, and you may recall the 9 commission indicted the C I A. For a failure of imagination. They could not imagine the way terrorism had gone grassroots. You could not imagine a new way forward. And yet, since then they've opened themselves up. They've brought in advisory boards. They brought in people like me, toe to kind of bring them knew I'd ideas, and that's a critical step I think we all need to think about. But I believe that this is It's something that's that's facing all of us. And so that's the framework I wanted to to set up today that organizations that can't close this, this imagination gap they get left behind and those of us who work there or dependent organizations or trying to figure our way and need those as clients, we get left behind, too. So I think what's required when I'm gonna lay off you today is a shift in mindset and a series of steps to take action. I mean, really, I want to get to some things we can do to take action. Creative problem solving toe literally Imagine it forward. So what I'm doing today is provided with a framework. We also have a downloadable guide that you can download that accompanies this as well as the book. So we've got a lot of ways you can you can dig in here. So here's the framework that I'm going to go through today. We're gonna talk about mindset, shift the role of discovery. And then how do you get to action? Um and I I think it's really important that that we start with mindset because mindset is really your perspective on the world and how you look at up opportunities. Um, it's what you have to do to prepare yourself. Discovery is just putting yourself out in the world and in action. This is really where it is, how many times, every places where people have great ideas, but they don't take action. So I hope you would leave this course with one or two things that are going to spur you to take action. That's how will judge whether this course was effective. Whether you've spent your time. Well, there are a couple things you're going to do at coming out of this class.

Class Materials

Bonus Materials with Purchase

Imagine It Forward Toolkit

Ratings and Reviews

Julie Hankes
 

Wow, this class was such a privilege to be a part of! There are so many gems in here, but what I loved most, is that she opened my thinking even bigger and offered me tricks and tips to facilitate that for myself and others long into the future. This is a tremendous gift as I'm already pretty outside of the box (i.e. I just took a client kayaking and then out in a seaplane yesterday for a visioning session) and creative in my work, so yes, what a gift! She also profoundly underscores the vital role the creative/imaginary mindset plays in the role of innovation and greeting our world's most wild challenges and opportunities. What a joy, have shared her work with many since this class took place. Thank you Beth for your courageous offering of imagination and championing it's vital role in our everyday work place and in our world's next steps into a more thriving, creative and innovative future!

Arthur Yakumo
 

I really enjoy this class. If you want a mind shift, having difficult seeing opportunities in front of you, especially living and working in a corporate job, this class is for you. Working for a fortune 500 job, I see how work is constantly changing, I didn't see the opportunities and how we can influence the change or be part of the change. This class helps you see and be part of the changing job revolution.

Christine Denker
 

If you want a mind shift to create change for yourself or your organization, then this class is a no-brainer! As a middle school English Language Arts teacher, I thought about how I could apply the concepts Beth teaches to my students who I have the privilege of interacting with daily. As a writer, I thought about how much I'm holding myself back and how I need to give myself permission to try new things knowing I'm going to fail and it's okay to do so. I really appreciated this course and had several takeaways that I can't wait to implement.

Student Work

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