Reports from the Knowledge Labs about our recent findings, research topics, and interviews with lifestyle leaders who are creating their own futures.

How to stimulate your own powers of foresight. Consider the following thought provokers. Ask yourself, in these categories what are the brand new trends and forces? Which are the ones growing in importance? Which current forces are loosing their steam? Which have peaked or are reversing themselves? Which are the "wildcards" about to disrupt us in the future? POLITICAL AND TECHNICAL thought for food: Electronics, Materials, Energy, Fossil, Nuclear, Alternative, Other, Manufacturing (techniques), Agriculture, Machinery and Equipment, Distribution, Transportation (Urban, Mass, Personal, Surface, Sea, Subsurface, Space), Communication (Printed, Spoken, Interactive, Media), Computers (Information, Knowledge, Storage & Retrieval, Design, Network Resources), Post-Cold War, Third World, Conflict (Local, Regional, Global), Arms Limitation, Undeclared Wars, Terrorism, Nuclear Proliferation, Weapons of Mass Destruction, Governments (More/Less Power and Larger or Smaller Scale), Taxes, Isms: Nationalism, Regionalism, Protectionism, Populism, Cartels, Multinational Corporations, Balance of Trade, Third Party Payments, Regulations (OSHA, etc.) Environmental Impact, U.S. Prestige Abroad. SOCIAL AND ECONOMIC Food for thought: Labor Movements, Unemployment / Employment Cycles, Recession, Employment Patterns, Work Hours / Schedules, Fringe Benefits, Management Approaches, Accounting Policies, Productivity, Energy Costs, Balance of Payments, Inflation, Taxes, Rates of Real Growth, Distribution of Wealth, Capital Availability and Costs, Reliability of Forecasts, Raw Materials, Availability and Costs, Global versus National Economy, Market versus Planned Economies, Generations: Y, X, Boomers, Elderly, Urban vs. Rural Lifestyles, Affluent vs. Poor, Neighborhoods and Communities, Planned or Organic Growth. Got Knowledge?

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The Journal of 2020 Foresight
Monday, September 25, 2006  

Jargon Translations: the Last Thumb Filtering for Fit

Chapter Four: The Tribal Territories

By Steve Howard, CKO
The Knowledge Labs

Table of Contents
Chapter One: Basecamp
Chapter Two: The Ridge
Chapter Three: The Outpost
Chapter Four: The Tribal Territories

"Street performers draw people in, amaze them, and then ask for money. Seemingly improvisional, street performers in fact stabilize their scripts. Every performer must have practiced bits to use as opportunities arise. A street performer's bits cannot be picked fully formed out of a hat. Improv theatre involves new-to-the-world performances. If you're 'winging it,' you're doing improv."

B. Joseph Pine II and James H. Gilmore, “The Experience Economy”

DOUBLE NICKEL RANCH. In the UnInterview, you have to translate your skills and accomplishments into their dissatisfactions, their priorities, their values, and their jargon as their implicit needs surface within their concerns or problems. You can figure out what their challenges may be ahead of time by following six rules of thumb.

Journal of 2020 Foresight: One of the easiest ways of learning the jargon is to complete a survey of knowledge-gathering interviews, isn’t it?

Explorer: It sure is, because the last rule of thumb is all about translation – especially if you are changing careers or industry niches.

Eagle: Using their language you may refer to problems as "an area you probably are planning to move into" or "a concern of yours" or "a challenge facing you."

Explorer: Our survey approach is a way of gathering inside intelligence about a particular organization or career direction by talking to people.

J2020F: One of the things that I like about this approach is you are NOT looking for a job – and you truly mean it.

Explorer: And truthfully, by following our approach, you are narrowing your career search from the very broad to the very specific.

Eagle: And remember. YOU ARE THE SCREENER, here. Survey interviewing serves two purposes.

J2020F: O.K. I’ll bite, what’s the first one?

Eagle: First, it expands your network of contacts, and second, it provides you information about potential jobs and allows you to become more focused in your career goals.

J2020F: Whom do you talk to?

Eagle: Begin by identifying the organizations and people that at least appear to do what you want to do.

Explorer: You may start by finding somebody who does something close to what you want.

J2020F: How do you find the first one?

Explorer: You can obtain names from directories of all kinds -- online -- and in paper form, such as the Chamber of Commerce, newspaper and magazine articles, even your holiday card list.

Eagle: You already have a network of friends. If they aren't doing what you think you'd like to do, they may be able to refer you to someone who is. Or, when all else fails, try social networking services like Linked In.

J2020F: What do you do when you make contact?

Eagle: When calling someone you were referred to (your secondary sources), you may not get through to the person on the first try.

J2020F: That’s happened to me many times. How do you handle the screened call?

Eagle: If asked the nature of the call, just give the referral source and state that the call is personal.

J2020F: Then what?

Explorer: When you reach your party, cover these points.

1. The name of your referral source.

2. Your major interest -- the briefer, the better.

3. A face-to-face appointment you want to schedule.

Eagle: As a general rule of thumb you should ask for about 15 minutes of the person's time, although you will usually end up with more than this.

J2020F: How does the interview unfold?

Explorer: Be genuinely interested in the other person.

J2020F: Rather then only as someone who might have an opening now or can get me a job?

Eagle: Remember that this is a human being who has a career and may be passionate about their work – or, maybe just as importantly is dissatisfied. Either way this information can help you make decisions about what you want to do.

Explorer: So, in the interview ask:

1. How did you get into this field?

2. What do you like most about the job?

3. What do you like least?

4. What are your primary responsibilities?

5. Do you know anyone else I might benefit from talking to?

J2020F: Do you follow an agenda like the one you described with the decision maker?

Eagle: Well, here are some guidelines:

1. Plan a manageable agenda, with four or five key open-ended questions.

2. Let the person interviewed talk freely.

3. Ask answerable questions that are open-ended.

4. Focus on the person.

Explorer: People love to talk about themselves, and most want to help you out.

Eagle: We all feel flattered when asked for advice or for our opinion.

J2020F: I can see how in a survey framework, following up later with what happened when you followed their advice is very powerful.

Explorer: It almost always guarantees a second or third meeting without any awkward feelings attached to either party.

Eagle: And, remember that the world is really a dynamically changing set of events. Returning for a second or third time will almost always result in a new list of introductions or key inside information.

J2020F: What about follow-up to build the knowledge-sharing relationship?

Explorer: I’m glad you asked. Remember to keep a record of everyone you talk to in journal or contacts database, and ALWAYS send a thank you note.

J2020F: What if I feel intimidated. I mean I’m moving to a new resort location and I don’t really have a network already established.

Explorer: If you're shy try a practice interview by talking to a person who shares a mutual enthusiasm, like skiing or mountain biking or glass blowing or 3-D puzzles.

Eagle: You can also talk to somebody at a place that fascinates or interests you, such as a television station, museum or sports arena.

Explorer: Or, pick someone who works on an issue that fascinates or interests you like global warming or global heritage history sites.

J2020F: After I follow the six rules of thumb, how do I persuade someone that I'm the best fit for my ideal position?

Got Knowledge?
Copyright ©2002 - 2006 Aarnaes Howard Associates. All rights reserved worldwide.

7:14 AM

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