If you are in business, you have to make money. That’s not a question; it’s a fact. It is also a future certainty. Whether digital or physical, so long as currency exists, you will need to work to make it, use it to pay for things and save it for the stability of your business and employees.
After all, a popular quote in business books and often referenced by Kevin O’Leary on TV’s Shark Tank is, “If a business doesn’t make you money, it’s a hobby.”
However, money should not be the stand-alone measurement for how you weigh out the success of your business. It doesn’t matter if you are a small- to medium-sized business or a massive corporation, chasing money alone will only strand you on a plateau of worry. But if you need to make money, why shouldn’t you classify “success” as “making a lot of it”?
What else can be the better definition of “success” in your industry, and how can you use other future certainties to achieve that type of success money can’t buy?
Find What Makes You Significant
Instead, businesses and business leaders should chase significance.
Significance will not only bring you the money most follow endlessly; it will bring you something of far more value: longevity in business.
In the past, I have written blogs about valuing significance over success. This is where innovation using disruptive digital technology or foreseeable Hard Trend future certainties can transform an industry or the world for the better, and in turn, you generate a profit and grow your organization.
With a plethora of businesses emerging that all have a mission statement of changing the world, it may seem like a heavily saturated business principle. Everyone wants to change the world, is going green or trying to save lives with their products or services; why or how can your organization be any different?
If you already own or lead a business or organization, the answer to that comes from a combination of looking for a problem to solve and using my aforementioned Hard Trend Methodology to identify the Hard Trend future certainties shaping the world both inside and out of your own industry, and the Soft Trends open to influence.
The Perfect Companion
Artificial Intelligence (AI) is one of the leading disruptive digital technologies that is transforming so many facets of organizations and industries around the globe.
We clearly see it in the manufacturing sector, where artificially intelligent robots are replacing humans in doing mundane tasks, causing some to worry that this disruptive technology will only take more jobs away as time goes on. This may sound negative, but in other areas, it can actually change and improve the world.
Ageless Innovations, founded internally at Hasbro, was created on the premise of chasing significance over success, and utilizing my Hard Trend Methodology to do so. They manufacture robotic, artificially intelligent companion animals for seniors and other individuals who cannot own a living pet for a variety of reasons.
The product, referred to as Joy For All, pairs the digital with the physical. AI is combined with unbelievably fluid robotics to create a lifelike dog or cat. The software that runs the robotic companion animal also learns and grows with the owner via an app, emulating a pet’s growing affection.
A Closer Look at Their Significance
This innovation is certainly significant, but let’s look a little deeper into the few main ways this relates to my Hard Trend Methodology.
First, Ageless Innovations noted that AI is a Hard Trend in and of itself that will only accelerate while identifying that the Soft Trend of AI is that there is boundless opportunity to leverage it in exponential ways. Then, they simply looked for a problem to solve with this Hard Trend.
And second, they noted a completely different Hard Trend — age. Aging is a future certainty, and in many cases, an individual may be alone during later stages in life and in a situation where they need companionship, but cannot afford or care for a pet. This product emulates that companionship without the need to feed it, take it to the vet or suffer any risk of neglect.
Furthermore, Ageless Innovations also looked to a Hard Trend of younger individuals who may not be able to have a living pet due to a disability, both physical or mental, that also need companionship or perhaps a therapeutic comfort animal.
Think Exponentially and Anticipate the Future
No matter which of their Hard Trend thought processes connect with you the most, it is clear that Ageless Innovations thought quite exponentially about their significance as a company, and their financial success is following suit. And just think of how they will be able to bring even more lifelike characteristics to their product as AI gets better thanks to other digital advancements, such as edge computing where the processing of information is done right at the source!
Use this example to think of ways in which you can think exponentially about what your organization can do to significantly impact your industry and the world. Likewise, implement an Anticipatory mindset about the future by paying attention to the future and its problems that will need solutions.
So how can you leverage disruptive digital technology to make the world a better place and, in turn, unlock a level of longevity for your organization that may have been otherwise unattainable?