Hank Blank’s Predictions for 2015


So this is the time of the year for predictions. Here are some behaviors and trends I see coming or going or maybe some things I want to occur. We all want to create our own versions of the future.

Productive people will increase the amount of silence in their lives. I hear, read, and see little smatterings of this in life and in the media.

Messages about no cell phones or photos are increasingly more prevalent on the bottom of menus. I was having lunch at a difficult to get a reservation restaurant the other day and the recently seated customer next to me asked the waiter about their Wi-Fi. The waiter turned and responded with a certain air of smugness that we don’t have Wi-Fi sir. I wish he would have added Monsieur.

The waiter was only one of a number of No Wi-Fi snobs I have met in the past year.

I looked around. No one in the restaurant seemed particularly disturbed or engaged on any device. They seemed to be eating or talking without having to tell the internet about it. They looked successful and somebody at the table certainly had to be when the check came.

When I travel to places like Buenos Aires, I see less attachment to smart phone leashes and more talking and reading newspapers in cafés and restaurants. Yet the majority of establishments have Wi-Fi stickers on their doors.

The people that are eating there are just better focused on what is important in life. Many people there have modest incomes but other riches.

We all readily offer critiques of our observance of family fun situations where there is a family of four focused on their screens in total absorption and in total silence from each other.  Are we having fun yet kids?

I have seen commercials in Canada where everyone walking into a party drops their Smartphone into a basket before entering the guest’s home.

People will include a longer daily digital detox into their lives and start to separate home from work to a greater degree. This is contrary to recent past but the convergence of technology and high unemployment has passed its equinox. People act differently at night when the unemployment rate is lower.

What would happen if you increased the amount of silence in your life? What if you quieted your mind more often and stopped reengineering your brain. Would you fall behind? Would any of those things that you worried about today matter tomorrow?

Companies will finally change the way they interact with their employees because they will have to or they will risk losing them. Employees will comprise salary levels to a degree for paid vacation time. Where you have been and how you have grown will be as important as where you work.

In addition to the growth of vinyl records more people and especially Millennials will increasingly embrace paper books.  Yes vinyl records are the only growing segment of the record industry and becoming more available. Did I see vinyl records at Costco this Christmas?

Less will continue to evolve to be more. Millennials want fewer smaller houses or no houses, less car or no cars, less debt for sure. Creative frugal will be king or queen.

There will be a shift from life time learning to personal lifetime earning as everyone becomes more entrepreneurial. Everyone will increasingly understand that finding knowledge or skills that can provide lifetime earning outside of your work will be paramount as there is no job security and you have to have economic options outside of working for the man.

People will realize that they can become too old for their company but but not too old for life and that they can make money no matter how old or young you are. It is not about your retirement fund but how much money you can put in the bank by working for yourself each and every day.

Looks like it is going to be a great time to be alive.

Connect with Hank on LinkedIn, Twitter, & Facebook:


Watch a Video called Why Young People Shouldn’t Try to Get a Job.

I Love My Job.  I Just Want to Keep It.

Why Companies Need to Change Their Hiring Lens.


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