Sometimes the oldies are the goodies. One of my favourite goodies is Alvin Toffler, I first came across him at a time in my life when I was beginning to have confidence in myself and my own ability to learn. His book The Third Wave made so much sense to me then and now. Toffler used the term waves:
• The First Wave is the settled agricultural society which came after the Mesolithic & Neolithic Revolutions which replaced the hunter-gatherer culture of the Palaeolithic era.
• The Second Wave is the Industrial Age society. The Second Wave began in Western Europe with the Industrial Revolution, and subsequently spread across the world. Key aspects of Second Wave society are the nuclear family, a factory-type education system and the corporation. Toffler writes:
“The Second Wave Society is industrial and based on mass production, mass distribution, mass consumption, mass education, mass media, mass recreation, mass entertainment, and weapons of mass destruction. You combine those things with standardisation, centralisation, concentration, and synchronization, and you wind up with a style of organisation we call bureaucracy.”
• The Third Wave is the post-industrial society. Toffler says that since the late 1950s most countries have been transitioning from a Second Wave society into a Third Wave society. Terms such as the Digital or Information Age are used to describe it.
This quote resonates with me. “The illiterate of the 21st century will not be those who cannot read and write, but those who cannot learn, unlearn, and relearn.”
The theme for the Haywards Heath and District Business Association’s (HHDBA) Annual Conference is “Time for a change”. Cullen Scholefield is delighted to be one of the sponsors and I will be presenting a session on ‘Time to Change Management Approaches’. Without giving too much away my second quote from Alvin Toffler will give you a hint!
“The secret message communicated to most young people today by the society around them is that they are not needed, that society will run itself quite nicely until they – at some distant point in the future – will take over the reins. Yet the fact is that society is not running itself nicely… because the rest of us need all the energy, brains, imagination and talent that young people can bring to bear down on our difficulties. For society to attempt to solve its desperate problems without the full participation of even very young people is imbecile.”
The Conference gives local organisations a very cost effective way to learn, consider new ideas and prepare for the Fourth Wave and wonder what challenges it will give us!