Hey everybody. How's it goin'? I'm Chase Jarvis. Welcome to Creative Life and specifically our series called, 30 Days of Genius. In this series I'm talking to the top creatives, entrepreneurs, thinkers and I'm extracting all kinds of value from their brain and sharing it with you, actionable insights and help you live a better career, hobby and life. If you're new to this series check out CreativeLive.com/30, the number three, zero, DaysofGenius. You press that button there to sign up and we will put amazing little nuggets from these interviews with the world's top folks in your inbox every morning for that dose of inspiration and knowledge. Our next guest has been a friend for some time now, extremely talented, insightful. He talked about all the things we're talking about today years and years before anybody else I know. He's a digital anthropologist, which to me that's like. He's the author of the book, WTF, What's the Future of Business and he's also got a new book out called, X, w...
hich is about experience, experience design, my good friend on the show today, Mr. Brian Solis. What's up buddy?
What is up? (upbeat music)
Brian, you made it. South by Southwest. Thanks a lot, bud. I appreciate you joining us.
Oh my gosh, the pleasure's all mine. Any time to see you.
Come on, we travel the world and we're always like. South by Southwest, you're a maniac here. You're speaking, you're hosting a lounge, you got a keynote tomorrow. Thank you for working, the times, I've keynoted at South by twice and I just basically go in a hole before my keynote 'cause I don't wanna see anybody. I don't wanna hear anything. I'm just like, and you're just out here, you're runnin' the show.
Well, you know, I'm trying to, it's all in the fight to stay relevant, right, because there's a lot of really amazing things and with social media now everybody has a voice and so for me to have to sort of compete with all of the noise out here you gotta work a little bit harder.
Gotta hustle. Just talkin' with Mr. Mark Cuban. We were talking about how you can control the amount of effort you put in. There's a lot you can't control the market conditions, you can't control the weather, but you can control how hard you hustle and certainly South by does define the hustle. We're all. There's a fair bit of partying that goes on. At night I'm trying to stay like, so I can get a good night's sleep, but so, give us a little bit of background and so analysts, you know the audience for this show is creative, creative entrepreneurs, solopreneurs, free lancers, people who have a pension for creativity. They want, they either consider themselves creative or want to be more creative and the reason that I wanted you on the show is because you provide insights about the future. You help people see around corners and one of those corners that I think is the huge exclamation point, and we'll put your book all over this show, bing, bing, bing, X is about experience. So, that's one of the things that I was hoping you could talk about and why don't you give us like the background, the backbone if you will, about what experience is and why our audience should care.
Yeah, absolutely. One of the biggest things that I've found in my research is that customers are changing, people are changing, right. So, it's the result of a lotta things. Technology, its impact on society, but also how we connect and we communicate. I mean, just think about Snapchat or think about Instagram or Uber or Tinder, right. All of those things are re-wiring your brain, whether you know it or not, to expect things differently, to do things differently and what they're all teaching us is that the world literally revolves around us. I call that the ego system, and that we're becoming accidental narcissists because it's the easiest thing. You wanna car? It'll be here in four minutes. You wanna find a date tonight? Swipe right, swipe left, it'll just, it's all now.
It's all now and it's all you.
Exactly, it's all you, or me and what I've found is that they want experience. They don't just want products, they want experiences where they're the center of this universe and businesses that create products and support those products the way that we did 30 years ago does not work anymore for today's customer.
What's an example of you think something that doesn't work and like the old way of supporting those things, talk about that for a second. Like, what's broken?
iTunes is a perfect example, right. Here's something that completely disrupted the music industry and now it's been completely disrupted by Spotify or Sonos. One of the hottest speaker systems on the planet is getting disrupted by Amazon Echo. So, the infrastructure of those products and how you support and sell and make them relevant or how you innovate is now gotta be much faster, much more plugged in and the whole idea of anthropology and sociology and psychology and social science has never been more important, even data science, because now you can understand people and design for people.
I think the vernacular around design and experience, design, we'll talk about your book in just a second. To me that vernacular is just accelerated so much, not dissimilar to the actual processes and the way we think and act and behave and expect. One of the things that I always have grappled with and fought for is that the people who come in contact with me as a photographer, prior to starting Creative Live, even you know, especially now with Creative Live, is what it feels like the first time you come in contact with some content that I've made or of my photographs or the experience of using Creative Live and how is it different. How do you stand out? And I think a lot of people who, you know, we're three minutes, five minutes into the show here, it's like, I wanna tell them how it relates to you and everything. It is what differentiates you from all those other people. You wanna stand out, certainly you have to be great at your craft, but you have to be even better at creating the experience of experiencing your craft. How do you experience, Chase or Creative Live or Brian or any of y'all's business out there? So, give me a little context around that if you will. How can it be a differentiator for people and what is this experience and experience design?
Yeah, I mean I'll geek out for as long as you want on the subject. This is gonna sound really trite, but I promise you that this is, I had to think about what experience, what is an experience? You know, and believe it or not, that's a very hard question to answer. This book took three and a half years to write because one of it is getting down to the essence of what makes an experience possible and then, how do you ironically make a book a good experience about experience design, right. So, my friends, our friends, at Mechanism, they helped me for the last several years thinking and patiently thinking this through. An experience turns out is an emotional reaction to a moment, right. And, when you put those together in a series, that the sum of that is what the experience is. So, if you think about the context of business. If I hit your site, if I see some marketing, if I talk to a representative, if I have a problem, the experience that I have is the result of all of that, right, and so we leave that to chance today. We just come up with a brand or we come up with great marketing and we try to optimize our site design and we have a contact center or we have human, or fake human interaction. You know, press I can understand your voice, tell me what you're tryin' to do. We do everything to get away from people, but companies like Disney or Apple or Nike, they're very intentional about every moment of truth. They want you to feel and react a certain way. So, when you start to treat it like an emotion, imagine now if you know that this is how you react to Creative Live for example, what if I then started to plug in to how you're changing, your aspiration. What're you really trying to do? What can't you do today? And, I start to take that into experience design and then apply it in everything that I do, by design, people feel great. People love it. You're helping them do something and they might not be able to put their finger on what it is, but they will absolutely love it. There's a quote that inspired me to get into experience design, 'cause the experience design buzz word, there is experience, right. Raw human emotion and it was Maya Angelou quote which was, "people will forget what you did, people will forget what you said, but they will never forget how you made them feel", and that was, wow, that's exactly it. The fact that I can't find a common definition of experience or how to create one, is ridiculous. So, that's one of the reasons it took so long to design the book.
But, it's a very, very, it's a very critical and powerful differentiator and that's the thing that if you're sitting at home and you're trying to figure out there's how many photographers out there, how many designers, how many people that are making beats in their basement trying to get their music on the radio, trying to get their music in the next commercial, whatever, and creating and crafting experiences and thinking that through. What is it like to experience my brand or your brand or your brand or look at all the cameras here. And so, do me a favor and tell these kitchen counter entrepreneurs, solopreneurs, free lancers, tell 'em how to think about it.
Well, I'll tell you a quick things that we put into the context and then how to think about it will follow. I was watching the Grammy's and someone next to me, after watching Lady Gaga's performance said, she, what a talent, right. I thought about that. Maybe I overthink things too much, but I thought about that and I said, you know if you go on YouTube you can spend the next 24 hours finding talent. There's amazing people all over the world.
Yeah, and in a million disciplines. Could be a talented farmer, you could be a talented juggler.
So, what makes her a better talent than someone else? And, she is an experience. She's not just a singer, performer, song writer. She is an absolute experience. She's designed the Lady Gaga experience, right, and built a business ecosystem to support it. So, how does that relate to everybody?
It's like the version before you get it. So, I had the opportunity, I endorsed Polaroid with Lady Gaga. I was the face of the brand for Photography World, global photography community and she was the pop culture side, and so I got to spend some time with her, with her ideas. And, you know, alongside her in press releases and photos and things like that and the experience of being with her as in like sitting there, was measurable. It was palpable, and it was a thing. And so, your point about like the performance in a 2D world where you're looking at a screen or listening to some audio or whatever, the experience that your friend got watching the Grammy's it's not lost, in fact it's amplified in person. So, there is very much crafted, so just rubber stamped validation. Now back.
I found myself just listening to you, keep going.
So, but what does that mean if you're not Lady Gaga and you're you know, Sally Designer in you know, middle America or you know, southern Italy or whatever? Like, how should folks at home be thinking about this?
You know, we have to think about it this way. What do you do very well? What do you do better than anybody else? And now, turn that into a whole ecosystem of how you talk about you, how you present you, how you follow up after you've delivered something. All of the things are sort of opportunities to create magic, right. And so then, before you even get there it's this. What do you want somebody to feel after they're done with you and every moment of truth, right. So, I'll use myself as an example. I hired a story board artist from Pixar. His name is Nicholas Sung and he helped me through a story boarding process, better understand who I was really trying to reach, what's a day in the life of their world, what I could do to have an impact in their world and it made me, I wish I did it before I started writing the book because then after I did it I had to re-write the book.
Could've saved me weeks, year, months.
Years. And, he brought to life the idea of what a relationship really means, right. I thought about it. This is my seventh book. I naturally came to it as, I'm an expert. I have something to share with you. Let me write it. I hope it's gonna be amazing, but then, he helped me see that it's not just about the book. It's about the problem someone has trying to figure out how to be more successful or how to increase their business or how to build better relationships with their customers. And, when you see the world outside of that, then you can say, this is the role I'm gonna play in it. This is, this is, I'm a director, I'm an orchestrator, I'm a conductor, right. All of these things then now become intentional in all of the work you do, right. It gives it a purpose. It gives it a role. It gives it context. It gives it connectability. So, that's for me as an author, it changed how I marketed the book. It changed how I designed the book. I'll give you one last example. It wasn't just good enough to understand who the customer was. It wasn't just good enough to figure out my Lady Gaga experience for all of this. It turns out that when you look at people and their aspirations and how they make decisions and all, what inspires them, what doesn't inspire them, what's relevant to them, it gives you a gift of empathy. And empathy is what unlocks a whole new level of perspective. I had to believe that people look at their phones so much, you know it's actually 1500 times a week, it's about on average 177 minutes a day, that with every pitch, zoom, swipe, that has to be reprogramming your brain, so what I'm asking you to do and I did the same thing is, I studied people, right. And, I though what can a book be today, knowing that your brain is different. How are you learning? What are you sharing? What do you retain, right? Because you can't create an experience just by following what everybody else does, right. That's where we get into trouble. Turns out, turns out that our attention span, well I'll give you a teenager's, 60 seconds is how long they can focus before they reach for their phone while they're doing homework. It's crazy. And, if you have to engage people that way, then I'm not gonna be able to write long sentences and traditional chapters. So, we wire framed the book to be an app. It's amazing. It's the size of an iPad Air. There's no Table of Contents. Turns out that that doesn't necessarily work as well as it used to. The idea of a chapter is now completely different. There's a certain amount of sentences that you can string together before you need a white space, right. You know, to keep you wanting to turn the pages. Anyway, I share this with you because I too, had to learn a little bit more than I. It's not good enough to be good enough or it's not good enough to be the best. You have to now understand the impact that you wanna have and the role you wanna play in someone's life and then who that person is and design for all of it. And, it's so inspiring.
That's the thing I'm putting my, looking at my own problems, challenges with my personal brand, Creative Live, brand especially, and knowing that my friends, my community, my fans, anyone who is going to come in contact with either of those things, I look at that as like, oh my gosh. There's so much opportunity, you know. Can I bring up an example and it's, I think some people are gonna recognize it. It might be just a tad outdated. I'm gonna call it out though and that's the safety video for Virgin. So, Virgin, when, it was a number of years ago, five years ago in Virgin America, five to eight years ago, Virgin America launched, whenever that was and their safety video was just flush with, it was beautifully shot. It was interesting. It was funny. It was, it was an area that nobody believed innovation was possible and the sweet irony is that it's in those cracks where you can stick a wedge in and make something make an experience, because people, it's where people don't expect it where there's an opportunity to thrive. If you're trying to compete with people on fuel prices or just price alone or how fluffy is the pillow, or like all those things are things that the airline, amen, that the airlines have fought around for years and years, but it was thought that that was untouchable until Virgin pushed it. And now, you know, we're years later and there's everyone's doing, trying to be cutesy, some with better and more or less success than others. But, when I think of anyone who's listening to our talk, I keep going back to the fact that, what is the safety video in your world? Where are people not expecting to have an amazing experience and how can you give them something there? And, if you think about that, that spectrum, there's so many touch points. Talk to me about like, touch points, free lancers trying to shape their business. How can they be different and better?
That is so, I mean, you just, you just made me, you just blew my mind because that's exactly what this is. You know that, as a digital analyst, there's no shortage of innovation in this world, right. The thing that I find incredibly unappreciated is that innovation rarely starts with the technology first approach, right. It's always because someone saw something differently, right, like the airline safety video. I don't know if you use Microsoft Word, but you know, we click a three and a half inch floppy disc to save a file, right. And you and I know what that is. There's a whole generation that just thinks that's a save icon, because they don't actually know what that is and it's little things like that. We have to remember that. The way we see the world and how other people go through the world, everything's open for opportunities. Or, the remote control is an example I tell in the book. I wanted to know what happened. Why do we have a remote control in a world of this, right. All of these fantastic televisions and they all ship with a remote control.
It's like what (mumbles).
It's 'cause nobody stopped to ask why, right. I think we just need to ask more about why or what if instead of no, we possibly can't. The average remote control has 70 buttons on it and for the course of 60 years, they've gotten progressively worse because they just take the latest technology and bolt it on, right. And we tend to do that with business. We tend to think about the process. We look at our competitors as being people in the same market and what Virgin did is they looked at Hollywood to be inspired for their airline safety video and boom, they changed the game. Imagine if they thought the same way about their contact center, right, because you have a great safety video, you've got a delicious airplane experience. You have cool airport lounge experience, but if you have a problem, everything unravels and everything you thought about Virgin is now gone and it has to either be rebuilt or is lost, right. So, you have to think about your business, experientially.
Very wholistically, too.
And, it just turns out they do a great job on so many spectrums which is why they came outta nowhere to really disrupt the airline industry. Remember, you used to be able to shop and you could see all of the prices at once, as opposed to just like, clicking through. Is that a priority price, no. Do I want a smaller seat, no. Do I want a bigger seat? Do I wanna fly on Tuesday? You just like, lay it all out there. Here's what the Monday through Friday looks like. Here's first class to cattle class and here's top to bottom, bit seats to small seats. And, you're like, I want this price point, this seat, this day, so powerful.
Think about a parking sign. They're the most impossible thing to understand and read, especially in the context of that moment. I gotta move my car, I can't put it here. And, every aspect of that, those are touch points, right. So, your business touches people. How do they find you? What happens once they connect with you? How do you get them to come a little bit closer to you? What do you do afterwards to keep 'em coming back? The best place to start right now, even before you get into experience and what do you want people to do, is just, why don't you find the friction? Understand that people are different. There's a lotta great free research. I publish great research and you don't even have to buy the book.
Where would they go to find your free research?
BrianSolis.com. Or, slideshare, my name. Slideshare.net/briansolis. I publish it all for free and it'll just tell you about the nuances of the customer which are the floppy discs. I always thought about it this way. When you think about it differently you have a safety video, right. Like, some of the questions I ask, what's the point of a website in 2016? It's not what it used to be, yet we still design with 1995 principles and in the Virgin America example, they, just as a brand new airline overhauled their entire website and it was very young, because they realized what you said. Experientially, it's the parking sign. What are people trying to do? Design for humans, right. You just have to understand how humans are different today. Take the friction out of the journey right now. That's the easiest place to start and then once you see the friction, once you feel the pain, once you start to feel the opportunity, what could you do better, right. Starbucks doesn't look at other coffee companies for competitive inspiration. They look at PayPal. They look at other financial mobile payment companies for inspiration.
We've had so many people as part of this series say that innovation and the best ideas come from outside the area that you're working in. So, talk to us about that. Give me some examples and maybe either theoretical ones or actual tactical ones where people are looking outside. Myself, just to plant a seed, my inspiration from a career perspective was looking at the artists in New York, specifically in the 60's, 70's and 80's, because they were re-inventing what it meant to be an artist and what art was and then telling stories about that experience. So, I'll use Warhol, took the Brillo boxes off the shelf at the grocery store and got them into the gallery and the museum and then called that art, and then made a life, a living, a brand out of recognizing or pointing at the absurdity of all of that conversation. And, in photography, I started taking pictures using really interesting technology and then telling stories behind the scenes. The work behind the scenes video didn't exist and I thought, well, what if I could tell a story using the model of artists of the 60's, 70's and 80's about what it meant to make art and how that art was being radically changed. What does it mean to be a photographer? Well, it's not just about being able to take a good picture. It's about being able to tell a story about taking a good picture and it's about being a technologist and it's about being, you know, many, many, many, many hyphens. So, that's my particular story, give me either some first principles or some tactics around how others should think.
Well, it starts by not taking anything for granted. It's very hard to do. A good friend of mine, Chris Herow, said once, you know, one of the, one of the problems that we have with creativity today with so much innovation is that we're taking it and we're building on legacy thinking, right. When, in fact, we have to remember that we live in a world where a magazine is an iPad that doesn't work. And, everything's counter intuitive and so I open up.
There's gonna be so many tweetable things out of this conversation. I love it.
He says, you know, we oft tend to think creatively by thinking outside of the box, right. That's our mental way to think differently and everybody says. The problem with that is that all you're doing is putting yourself in another box 'cause you haven't changed the rules, right.
Yeah, the rule changing, that's the thing that I love.
Yes. Change the rules and you have to feel confident enough to change the rules and you're gonna be okay, because once you start to move into this direction, same for me, I almost, I'm not gonna lie. I mean, to learn how to re-write sentences and design a book from scratch and basically, you think you've made your career on all of your past successes and I, I wanted to quit. I wanted to quit a thousand times in this process 'cause I didn't feel like I could do it. It was so hard. It was so debilitating, but it was also the journey you had to go through in order to see and do things differently. And now, I look back and it was the, what a gift I gave to myself, right. It's like I went to school for the new economy and that's what we just have to feel okay that we're gonna step outside of our norms. But, that's where innovation starts. That's where all the magic happens.
The pain, my biggest pains were very early on trying to understand if that was okay in this established, you know the art world is very, very established the way that photographers and directors have been hired for years and years. You always had to have an agent. And so, I did that and then I found, I believed that there was a better way and this started sort of telling stories about the work that you're doing in a world in which there was no such thing as behind the scenes videos and what I found is that early on I was very much vilified and so this thing that I had confidence in, when I started putting out this, like here's me shooting some Nike campaign and working with some Apple campaign, or whatever, telling stories about that, people would attack me because they believed that I was sharing secrets, other photographers in my industry, for example. And, at Creative Live we took that same approach. What does education look like? Well, what are the first principles that work great? How can we look and stamp those and try and re-think everything else. And, all of the other things, like providing access to the top experts for free, you don't think other education companies are like, oh my God, these guys are screwed. They're gonna go outta business tomorrow because they've got this free in business where you can come and watch education 24/7. It just turns out that we have now millions and millions of people who love what it is that we do. And, each of those experiences that I've had people were throwin' tomatoes at us until they figured out that we were onto something and then they were trying to get jobs.
And, what I really respect is you calling out the fear and the pain and pretend you're talkin' to the audience when you're talkin' to me and tell them why they shouldn't be afraid, that that's where innovation happens.
I'm a little bit older than a lot of the young entrepreneurs out there and it took me a really long time to realize that I could, I could have enough strength to just challenge convention, right. I grew up just every aspect of life. You do what you're told, you know. You finish your plate. You follow these rules. You sit a certain way. You do a certain thing and I just I never, I always felt afraid to do something different even though it never felt right.
The things that you were doing?
Yeah, the things I was doin', and so I just finally, I just, I had to, I had a good trust network and a good support network and I needed to talk through ideas and there was validation and good friends. We all have great friends and they will do, they will be there for you no matter what happens, but no one achieves greatness by not completely exposing themselves and that's the hardest part. Fear's the hardest part, but I'll just give you one thing that I think everybody should think about. I'll use myself as an example. I guarantee you, this happened with WTF, too, because I did a lot of experimentation in design. Everybody is going to look at me as the guy who, oh, we should have a designed book, just like that because that's so cool. That's the new trend. And, I'm the one who had to convince a publisher to make an investment in a whole new infrastructure and supply chain, right. And, a new way to approach design. So, I went and did all the hard work and so, they're gonna look at me and just say, Brian paved the trail. I want my book to look like that, too. The problem is is that they're gonna look at me as a traditional competitor and they're not going to re-think what the experience of the book should be. They're just gonna think that design is not the answer, right. All the while, what really made that book an experience was because I was looking at technology. My competitors were Tinder and Uber. My competitors were Apple. My competitors were all kinds of really cool products that are changing the game in every industry. My competitors were Ralph Steadman and Hunter S. Thompson because of what they did to journalism. I needed to look at people who just broke the boundaries. There's just this magical video and I use that word a lot because I.
I love the word, magic.
I was just so inspired by stories like, why Walt Disney, why Walt Disney invented the story process, the story boarding process for Snow White. I was inspired by Steve Jobs when he returned to Apple and getting completely ostracized by the audience, like, what makes you think you're gonna be able to turn this company around? They just wanted to go back to the Apple II and that whole framework and he, and he sits down and he's speechless in this one video that was just surfaced recently. This also inspired the book, which was, I can't design Apple products based on technology. I want to design Apple products that number one, make you feel and do amazing things. And two, that change the entire para dime and he said, you have to start with the customer experience before you do anything and what that experience is supposed to be. That was, man, yeah. That's my advice. You gotta look outside and you have to be inspired by the people who break the rules because they're like you and you get strength and confidence in knowing that this there's a framework, there's a pattern out there. We can all do this.
That's one of the things I love about the community that is around this ecosystem, these talks, this is that you get insight into other people and how they are managing, so you feel like you're not alone. You see some renegades that are doing great stuff and certainly some dolts that are doing everything wrong and you get to, you know, when you participate in the community, that's one of the reasons I say do something instead of nothing, lean in, be a part of the conversation is because you get so much more value by seeing everything that everyone's doing along the spectrum. Some people, being very, very successful and the tagline that I use is, be different, not just better and it's in that sort of different and different thinking, that's the Apple slogan, right? Think different. That I've personally seen so much success in the community. I wanna switch the sort of focus, I'm tryin' to earmark a couple of things right now. You clearly have a framework for your thinking. You're very analytical and that is, you call yourself a digital philanthropist, digital analyst, so what are some tips that you, Brian, do differently than some other people? Is there something, can you underline something that you think you do differently than other authors? And again, I'm hoping, by extension, that people can look at that and say, oh, this is my different thing, the way that I could attack a certain problem, so. What's your sort of what's it called? Your,
My je ne sais quoi?
Your je ne sais quoi?
It is that as a digital analyst I am supposed to cover technology and write about technology and I'm supposed to write about how businesses are changing because of technology. What makes me different and what I hope inspires you to think differently is, I didn't become a digital anthropologist because that's what I wanted to be when I grew up. I became one because I had to because the relationship between technology and business, just because this is what businesses are doing doesn't mean that that's what we're all supposed to do now, right. By the time you execute what you've read in my research you're late, so as a digital anthropologist, when you study the impact on people, how that changes people, decision making, what do they align with. What do they value? You start to, well first your mind gets blown. And second, whether you know it or not, you're touched. You will never look at things the same way again and it now starts to make more sense. Not only, it doesn't just explain what's happening, it starts to show you what's possible. And this is why you see disruption everywhere because they're starting to recognize patterns of people differently, unlock opportunities, hit it. Once they taste a new thing, you think about Uber. Do you think, how many Uber users go back to taxis.
We literally last night were calling Uber and there was a taxi right, like literally sitting right there willing to take you anywhere and we're lookin', it's a busy South by Southwest. They were like, it's gonna be six minutes before I can. We walk up to the cab and get in. He's like, where you goin'? And, I literally told my crew, I was like, doesn't matter that he's sitting right here, like he wants to extract as much money. He was like, oh, you goin' across town, that'll be $ instead of running the meter. I was like, no, I'm not gonna fuckin' do it. Like, later, you can just sit there. I'm happy to wait six minutes because I have grown very, very accustomed to transparency, authenticity, being able to just be aware of the things you wanna be aware of when you're tryin' to get someone to drive you somewhere.
That's right and one of the things that Uber does and Air B and B does this too is they are intentionally investing in experience design, not just from a technology standpoint or payment innovations but also, they're bringing the drivers to a standard of which, this the Uber experience. If you wanna be our driver what you impart. This is why you see Waters. This is why you see even Uber X is getting out and open doors for you. It's something that'll get better over time, but you're operating against the standard. This is the experience.
France, I will use Paris. I lived in Paris for a number of years and the taxis in Paris, if you think they're bad here, notoriously horrible, like, oh, where do you wanna go? (speaking in foreign language) No, that is not possible. And they're like, literally just because they don't wanna drive over there because they live over there or whatever. And, they'll just roll their window up and won't talk to you. The last time I was in Paris end of last year Uber is just dominating there. It is like, the service is impeccable. People pull up, they get out, they open the, I mean, it was like, wait a minute. This happened in the space of a year. Like, total transformation and that experience stands out so much 'cause it's so different than all the other taxis that were literally rioting, the taxi drivers are rioting because Uber is taking their business, but when you have the experience of using an Uber in Paris and you have the experience of using a Parisian taxi, it is worlds apart.
This is true for any disruption, which is I think the thing that I hope that people get from this conversation is that I can literally try anything new as long as it's purposeful, right. And, that was intent. In fact, Uber wasn't better because they couldn't get a Parisian cab, because there was just a little bit of snow in Paris and they shut, all taxis just stopped and it was ridiculous and we were stranded. That's the story of how they were able to, well why doesn't this exist, right. But, here's the thing. Taxi drivers rioting in London and Paris and around the world, that's how business reacts to disruption. Rather than,
Oh, good idea.
Yeah, we could just have done this.
Who says, good idea? Nobody at first.
Right, because this is a quote that I often share which is, but this is the way we've always done it, said no successful entrepreneur ever, right. And then, look at Tesla, they wanna sell direct to consumers. Oh, the industry freaks out and dealerships file motions to ban direct car sales because of franchise laws and sayin' but, I don't wanna have a franchise. I wanna be able to sell direct. Why is that up to you? And, it's the idea that all of this disruption happens because of preferences, that behavior change, right, the idea that you can trust a stranger to come to you via an app today is not an accident. It's all by design.
It's all by design. We are dangerously close to outta time. I know your time is very precious and you've been generous with it. I wanna ask a few very pointed questions on a rapid fire basis here. What's something about you that people would be very surprised and they don't know right now?
The real thing that drives my innovation is philosophy. I am always thinking about why the relationship, to what, what if, am I good enough, how could I be different. I love to think and talk.
What's one thing that you're really dubious of that everyone else is in favor of?
Oh my goodness. I have to study for that one.
Not everyone. I don't wanna be so, what is that, superlative in contact there, like, what's something that you generally are wary of that everyone's like oh, yeah, obviously.
Management infrastructures at companies and the same management infrastructures of education and the same management infrastructure of government. I am incredibly dubious of people making decisions on my behalf that have no fucking clue what the future looks like, or what it could be.
Powerful. How important is lifelong learning?
I tell people that I am just a student and it's humbling. It's lifelong.
The education system, does it work?
If I had to re-design the book to work, I promise we can re-design education.
Yeah. Do you believe that VR is how soon will VR be a thing? Is it six months, three years, ten years what's the sort of curve look like for VR and augmented reality and all that stuff.
Okay, so VR, it's a thing right now. It'll be incredibly verticalized as it moves across the bell curve, probably be two, three years, right. It's gonna go vertical, it's gonna go gaming, it's gonna go, I mean you see AR used to have the roller coasters. I don't know if you've seen this, but there are physical roller coasters, but you wear the VR helmet and as you're going through the roller coaster you are flying a spaceship and fighting aliens. It's pretty wonderful. So, you're starting to see it now. And, I also send a shoutout to Scully. I have an augmented reality motorcycle helmet that has a heads up display, it has speakers, blu tooth, voice control, cameras.
I met that guy on Friday night. What's his name?
Yes. I met Marcus on Friday night. Wow, he has fascinating.
It's here now.
Yeah. I've got it. I ride that. I will never ride with a normal helmet again.
I promise, I got it. Two more. Do you have any routines or things that you feel like help give you an edge, like something you can point to? Whether it's meditation, eating healthy or hanging upside down for 10 hours on Sunday with a pizza. Do you have anything that you specifically do that you think other people would benefit from?
I'm gonna just be honest. I'm trying to get an answer to this question. I'm having a really hard time with all of the technology, keeping up with all the communications platforms. I'm having a really hard time, so I am in the moment trying to sort out some new best practices for me to get a handle on everything.
There's so many I. A friend of mine you may or may not know, Gary, Gary Vaynerchuk, has been attacking me for like relentlessly for a year about Snapchat. You're an amazing story teller. What're you doing? Boom, boom, boom, boom. Turns out there was a squatter on my name, got my name back and like that's just another one. Now, I love it. It's fantastic, but I'm like my poor, like Facebook and all the other platforms are suffering and I have support and I have people in this room to help me everyday make and share content. I too, feel overwhelmed and I personally love the feeling of being overwhelmed because I'm not necessarily judging, like this one sucks now and this one's awesome and I know that I'd like to sample all of them, but I do feel overwhelmed at the ability to, what works for me and I like that you said, what works for you. Because, what works for someone else is probably gonna be slightly different. It's good to know that you're overwhelmed. What's a thing that I haven't asked you today in the time we've spent together that you wished I would have or that if you could throw a word in here right at the end, what would it be?
The question would be what, what are you gonna do next? And, the answer to that is, topically, I'm gonna focus more on innovation and not on technology. How people change their situation, right. So, how do you see things differently? How do you change a big company? How do you change a small company? How do you, what's the process for innovation? Just like if found a process for experience design, what is the process for true, true, true, honest, relevant innovation and at some point, I'm gonna try to apply that, I hope I win the lottery so I don't, so I can have the resources to do this, but how do I take what I just learned and figured out and force change in government, education and health care?
Thank you so much for helping us see around the corner. I find that the people that have influenced me the most have that gift, are very, very articulate like you are at sharing it and I'm very grateful for your time. I know you gotta bounce. Thanks a lot, brother. Appreciate it.
Brian Solis everybody. And, stay tuned for another episode where there's gonna be someone who is almost as awesome as Brian. It's gotta be right on the tails of this thing. Thanks a lot, everybody. Have a great day. (upbeat music)