Sunday, April 25, 2010

A New Book By Richard Florida--One of My Recommended Authors

The Great Reset: How New Ways of Living and Working Drive Post-Crash Prosperity.

This new book's Amazon description: "We tend to view prolonged economic downturns, such as the Great Depression of the 1930s and the Long Depression of the late nineteenth century, in terms of the crisis and pain they cause. But history teaches us that these great crises also represent opportunities to remake our economy and society and to generate whole new eras of economic growth and prosperity. In terms of innovation, invention, and energetic risk taking, these periods of "creative destruction" have been some of the most fertile in history, and the changes they put into motion can set the stage for full-scale recovery.

In The Great Reset, bestselling author and economic development expert Richard Florida provides an engaging and sweeping examination of these previous economic epochs, or "resets." He distills the deep forces that have altered physical and social landscapes and eventually reshaped economies and societies. Looking toward the future, Florida identifies the patterns that will drive the next Great Reset and transform virtually every aspect of our lives—from how and where we live, to how we work, to how we invest in individuals and infrastructure, to how we shape our cities and regions. Florida shows how these forces, when combined, will spur a fresh era of growth and prosperity, define a new geography of progress, and create surprising opportunities for all of us. Among these forces will be

* new patterns of consumption, and new attitudes toward ownership that are less centered on houses and cars
* the transformation of millions of service jobs into middle class careers that engage workers as a source of innovation
* new forms of infrastructure that speed the movement of people, goods, and ideas
* a radically altered and much denser economic landscape organized around "megaregions" that will drive the development of new industries, new jobs, and a whole new way of life

We've weathered tough times before. They are a necessary part of economic cycles, giving us a chance to clearly see what's working and what's not. Societies can be reborn in such crises, emerging fresh, strong, and refocused. Now is our opportunity to anticipate what that brighter future will look like and to take the steps that will get us there faster.

With his trademark blend of wit, irreverence, and rigorous research and analysis, Florida presents an optimistic and counterintuitive vision of our future, calling into question long-held beliefs about the nature of economic progress and forcing us to reassess our very way of life. He argues convincingly that it's time to turn our efforts—as individuals, as governments, and as a society—to putting the necessary pieces in place for a vibrant, prosperous future."

May I be the one to say that Richard Koch's Pareto Principle, or 80/20 Prnciple, would be a good one to insert at this time? Basically, we're all going to be doing more with less (time, people, things, money), and we'd better get on the train, or risk being thrown UNDER it. The future and how we live and work in it are going to seem desolate and scorched compared to the heady days of 2007-2008. Making money and doing business in the future is going to require a limber mind to acrobat around and through new regulation, and to find new sources of revenue...from every possible corner of the earth.

In another book (I don't remember if it was Richard Florida's or Daniel Pink's), we're told to embrace homosexuals as a leading source of innovative thinking, and that areas with large populations of them will become our next "economic progress zones." From what I've seen (which admittedly isn't much), most homosexuals prefer to take the Socialist route when thinking about the future--mainly, they struggle just to get equal rights, and ask "where's MY free lunch?" (probably from being embraced by Democrats). Maybe the innovation and progress comes later...or, maybe they're missing a key ingredient: money.

I have my suspicions about Richard Branson of Virgin Airlines--look at all the things he's done (and doing), yet we see no Mrs. Branson. I don't care--just get us back to space, Branson!

Richard Florida may not always be 100% dead-on, but he does offer plump and juicy food for thought. My advice is to read it and get a taste of what MAY be coming, and how to possibly navigate in it. I'm getting a copy. even though I'm not in business--I need to know how to navigate too!


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