Like our ancient ancestors, we are once again nomads. Not geographic nomads, but thought nomads. We keep our hearts and minds on the move, looking for the next thought or feeling that will make us sit up and take notice. To be thought nomads is to be wired for reinvention. We are in constant growth, ready to absorb new ideas, to take on innovation and … failure?
The “f” word doesn’t come up for me that often; just not the way I’m wired. But that doesn’t mean that failure is a stranger to me, or that I don’t think it’s an important part of reinvention. It just is not intentionally in my thoughts. But recently I was reintroduced to the concept of failure in a completely new, and yes, positive, light.
It was at Haute Dokimazo, a unique peer-to-peer conference that was held in Austin this May. Haute denotes something fashionable and Dokimazo refers to a test to prove if something is genuine or not. It was a gathering of about 100 event pros predominately from the worlds of tech and experiential marketing agencies.
[Quick side note before going on … The photos illustrating this piece are feats of architecture, reinvented entirely from wire. See the end of the post for more on them.]
Thought Nomads: Wired for Teaming
At Haute Dokimazo there were four structured workshops in the morning. This was followed by an afternoon of crowd-sourced content presented by attendees. Meaning, that the group determined what sessions and content they wanted to hear, which worked very well. In the afternoon I went to a great session on social media led by Tom Spano from Steelhouse, and was also excited to give my own talk on Brand Therapy. But in morning I attended a workshop about teamwork led by Stuart Katz of Dimension Design, and Glenn Thayer from The Voice of Meetings & Events.
The foundation of their content was built on the work of Amy Edmondson who talks and writes about teaming as culture [Teaming and Teaming to Innovate.] The concept of teaming on the fly was attractive to me as I have to build a new team each time my team and I begin to work with a client. We learn as much as we can as fast as we can in order to create effective campaigns that inform, educate and connect that business or individual with their business goals. As Edmondson found in her research on teams, the most successful teams work within the realm of “psychological safety.” In this zone, leaders encourage questions, curiosity and the challenge to long-held assumptions. In this environment no one is seen as being ignorant or intrusive by bringing up alternate views.
She concluded that while the most successful teams are those who fail the most, in reality, they are “failing” because they were empowered to report and address mistakes and then learn from them. As David Kelley, founder of IDEO, famously said, “Fail often to succeed sooner.” Reinvention is what it will take for today’s thought nomads to survive and thrive. With no road maps or GPS for where to go next, guidance comes from within, and from one another. The journey promises some unfamiliar terrain, but with a little rewiring of how we think, this quickly becomes a wide open space for possibility, and new connections to the passions that drive us forward.We are now thought nomads; our hearts and minds on the move for the next thing that will make us sit up and take notice. Click To Tweet
Wired for Beauty
The combination of material, environment and opportunity create change and impact. Italian artist Edoardo Tresoldi at a royal event in Abu Dhabi, Tresoldi was tasked with the creation an immense environment of architectural elements built from wire. Elegant partitions in the 7,000 square meter space. The installation was designed and built over a period of three months in collaboration with Dubai-based studio Designlab Experience. Lit from both above and below, the suspended wire domes, columns, and arches have a translucent ghost-like appearance, referencing classical architectural with Tresoldi’s modern aesthetic. Following the event, sections of the piece are being re-installed separately in universities, parks, and museums across the UAE capital.