The world needs future thinkers, big picture story tellers and guru consultants. At least a small part of the world needs it: those who are running it. Simply because most of the time, they don't have a clue what is happening out there, when it comes to disruptive technologies, design possibilities and entrepreneurial initiatives. That's where generalists come in, who see converging patterns and longterm scenario's developing. The only thing is that those complex future visons have to be illustrated by comprehensable and recognizable examples. Which of course have to be true. But in the speed of talks and consults things might get 'lost in presentation'. Understandable, but to be avoided when possible. It struck me reading an article on Parag Khanna, a global strategist, world traveler and best-selling author of for instance 'Hybrid Reality, Thriving in the Emerging Human-Technology Civilization".
In this article he mentions the UK fashion brand Burberry (well known for its trenchcoats, worn by previous generations) that has reinvented itself by using new digital technologie and focusing on e-commerce. And being so successful in doing so, says Khanna, that even Apple hired one of their most important designers. That designer wasn't 'just' a designer. It was in fact Angela Ahrendts, the CEO of the company, who joined Apple to become senior vice president of retail and online Stores and in doing so knocked £330 330 million off the value of the Burberry company in just a few hours. By not getting these kind of facts right, you run the risk of being less credible over all. However, I must say Khanna made a lot of sense in the rest of the article. Slip of the research department. Happens.