The last few months have raised the question of whether our world has indeed gone backwards, to find itself under threat from nature … or made a giant digital leap forward. Perhaps both.
Along with it is the realisation that our current systems are failing us and that we need to address deeper structural and legacy issues if we are to learn the lessons of the pandemic.
The challenges posed by a new technology revolution, the ecological emergency, illnesses of the body and mind, our lack of care, meaningful work, and growing inequalities demand that we build back better.
Commerce can lead the way forward. However, our approach must change.
It’s time for business to be in meta (and I don't mean the metaverse). To build more intentionally. Moving slower to make things (and not fast to break things). Producing within the boundaries of what this planet can support.
Where instead of ship dates and rapid iteration driving every unintentional decision, there is a real consideration for what kind of company we are building and the impact it will have.
For far too long business strategy has internalised the product developer’s MO of ‘thinking in beta’: “building the plane as we’re flying it”, “fake it till we make it”, “test and learn”, “just ship it”. This has advantages as well as serious drawbacks.
From fake news to disposable fashion, we are now living with a series of unintended consequences caused by Minimum Viable Products.
The stakes have never been higher. The new decade’s emerging technologies - artificial intelligence, synthetic biology, advanced material sciences - are much stranger, and their applications in our lives more fundamental.
“Being in beta” no longer feels like responsible strategy.
Being in Beta
Being in Meta
If 2020 was the year that forced people to introspect, can business develop a similar sense of self awareness, even vulnerability?
History shows that moments of disruption, painful as they are, provide the context in which we create and innovate. We know what is needed, we know the core principles and we know we cannot wait.
All existing resources—time, money, imagination, tools and technology must now be harnessed towards Building Back Better.
Not sure where to start? Join us on a sprint.