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Sean Pillot de Chenecey chats with Terence Mauri, a writer, mentor and global expert who helps business leaders to innovate, adapt and succeed in the age of disruption.
Included in the chat:
- Information on Terence’s book, The Leader’s Mindset: How to win in the age of disruption, where he helps companies to turn disruption into an opportunity
- Examples of the incredible speed of change
- The dramatic event that turned around Terence’s life and way of thinking
- Inspirational people Terence has met
- Strategies to help us counter disruption
- Terence’s new book, The 3D Leader: Take your leadership to the next dimension
Sean Pillot de Chenecey (00:04): Hello, this podcast is care of Speakers Associates, the global speaker bureau representing a select group of the world’s finest thinkers and thought leaders founded in 1999. Today Speakers Associates operate out of nine offices across seven countries covering the UK, Europe and Middle East. I’m Sean Pillot De Chenecey author of The Post-Truth Business and Influencers & Revolutionaries. In this series, I interview a range of fascinating individuals, proudly represented by the bureau. These change agents and industry experts give an update on their specialist, areas of knowledge, and also on their motivations and viewpoints regarding the future of business. Today, I’m really pleased to be joined by Terence Mauri he’s, an Inc. Magazine Columnist, thought leader and best selling author of The Leader’s Mindset: How To Win in the Age of Disruption. Who’s frequently invited to speak at top rank business schools, conferences, and companies around the world. He’s a global expert who therefore helps business business leaders innovate, adapt, and succeed in the age of disruption, in which massive, yet hard to predict upheavals are expected. Terence holds thinker in resident roles, MIT in London Business School, and is described as a game changer indeed by Harvard Business School, his books, radio interviews, and dynamic keynote talks, showcase disruption, case histories, lessons learned, and clever insights to future proof, your mindset and your business. So Terence, welcome.
Terence Mauri (01:41): Sean. Delighted to be here.
Sean Pillot de Chenecey (01:42): We were just talking about your early days in the in the epic and the renowned Saatchi & Saatchi so
Terence Mauri (01:49): Yes, it was a, it was certainly a, a time of disruption but also a time of creativity and entrepreneurship. And it gave me a fantastic grounding in how to scale innovation and really make a difference on a daily basis within an organizational structure.
Sean Pillot de Chenecey (02:10): So, I mean, you, you were one of the, sort of, you know, the creative you know, sort of leaders of that absolute powerhouse and, and the Saatchi & Saatchi brand, it has to be said was, you know, an, an epic in its day you know, they’re good now, but they were really, really great then. So just in terms of some of the things you worked on back in the day, perhaps just give us a, a reminder of the sort of campaigns you were involved in and what you’re proud of
Terence Mauri (02:30): Some great iconic campaigns, including you’ve been tangoed, sunny delight, Tropicana, and I think what the signature strength of Saatchi & Saatchi was ROI, not return on investment, but return on intelligence. And there were absolutely fantastic at, you know, even before there were all these different buzzwords and, and jargon around talent and, and maximizing talent. They were great at getting everybody to bring their full, authentic self to the, to the job. They were great at creating psychological safety where it was extra credit to speak up and challenge orthodoxy. And the saying was only dead fish go with the flow.
Sean Pillot de Chenecey (03:19): Oh, very nice.
Terence Mauri (03:54): It’s a great question. I think we’re at a really interesting inflection point in the history of humanity. Disruption has always been with us. I think the history of humanity is a history of disruption. For example, a hundred thousand years ago, we harness fire, which led to language, but we’re at this interesting inflection point now where what we’re seeing are four things, blurring of industry lines economic and geopolitical uncertainty disruptive technologies, such as AI nanotech and biotech, and also the shortening of company lifespans. And so this was what ignited the curiosity in me to research and write a book about how to launch scale, accelerate a mindset to thrive in this age of disruption where today is actually the slowest it’ll ever be in our lifetime. And depending on your personality type, that’s either exhilarating or, or terrifying. And so the, the, the book is really a, a tool kit with lots of actionable ideas to scale, not just your mindset, but your heart as well. And I think these two elements are going to be key drivers for winning in the twenties and winning beyond.
Sean Pillot de Chenecey (05:12): Mm, can I ask you to say about those in terms, but say starting with the last one first, so that ranging point about lifespans of business, like, so just to be clear about exactly what you mean there and, and, and what the impact of that is.
Terence Mauri (05:24): Yeah, so historically it would take probably between 15 and 70 years, that would be the average lifespan of a company and companies used to live longer than human beings, but over the last 15 years, we are seeing, I’m seeing sort of flat lining of that longevity. So my research shows that over the next 10 years, the speed at which companies go from hero to zero has troubled. And what that actually looks like is company lifespans of S and P 500, for example, or footy 100 dropping from that average of 50 to 60 years to less than 15 years. And if you calculate the the churn rate for the next 15 years, what that means for our listeners CEOs leaders around the world is that up to 70, 75% of organizations that we’re aware of and admire, or, or don’t admire today might not exist in their current format in the next 10 years.
Sean Pillot de Chenecey (06:29): Wow. And can I say, is part of that equation or issue? I think one of the things that I think a lot of people talk about in an agency world, I’m sure you’d have been talking about this a lot when you’re creative as arches mm-hmm
Terence Mauri (06:57): Exactly. So I think, you know, what I’ve observed over the last decade is a, a first of all, a flat lining of creativity, also automation, the rise of automation. And what I’m seeing is the exponential technology, such as AI and automation are turbo charging, new types of companies that are very difficult to compete with the asset light. They have 90% less operating costs. Last year I got to visit sheen in China mm-hmm
Sean Pillot de Chenecey (08:42): And then what about uncertainty?
Terence Mauri (08:45): The only
Terence Mauri (09:45): It took WhatsApp seven years to reach a billion users. It took the human genome over 14 years to be mapped out at the cost of over 3 billion today, you can get it done within 24 hours for the cost of less than $500. And then one of my favorite insights recently is I got to meet Elon Musk and visit SpaceX. They’re launching around 60 satellites every two weeks right now, they’ve got a target of 12,000 satellites into space over the next five years. But when I interviewed Elon Musk what he said was that actually that could go to 42,000 satellites and internally SpaceX has a code name. B F R B stands for big R stands for rocket I’ll leave F to our listeners’ imagination.
Sean Pillot de Chenecey (10:39): Wow.
Terence Mauri (10:56): Life is not linear and something, something happened in my life, which could not be planned for. So it was an autumn day. It was a Saturday. I was in the town market town of scrapped up an Avon, Shakespeare’s birthplace. And I’d actually walked into Woolworth’s with my sister and my mother. This is before war wars disappeared. Mm-Hmm
Sean Pillot de Chenecey (11:58): Mike Tyson’s. Yeah, yeah, yeah.
Terence Mauri (12:00): And, and so that completely changed my life. And, and for me that that’s when the sort of journey of self discovery and the pivot happened because I was forced into, I was forced to stay in bed for three months to recover, had lots of serious injuries. And, you know, when you’re outta the building, when you’re outta the office, that’s when you actually get to think, not at a shallow level, but at a deep level, and really, really kind of hold a mirror up and say, am I, are my actions, are my values aligned with reality is what I’m doing, what I want to do. Am I living my purpose? And I realized that, although I’d loved my first career in advertising, my, my kind of takeaway was no. I, I was no longer a sort of achieving my life’s purpose. And so that’s when I made the difficult decision to change direction and start the next chapter in my life. There was a philosopher who said, you know, life can only be lived forwards, but only understood backwards. And, you know, I realized that when I reflect upon that tragic day, that became the launchpad actually for the next best version of myself. And that happened around 15 years ago and really launched this relentless mission to help individuals, organizations, leaders around the world to achieve their best and boldest selves through mindset and heart.
Sean Pillot de Chenecey (13:32): Wow. What a story
Terence Mauri (13:40): Yeah. I mean, you know, thankfully we all survived. Unfortunately, you know, my, my sister did lose a finger and had some, she was only you know, she was very young at the time. So she had a lot of internal injuries and, and again, you know, fate, if it wasn’t, if it didn’t happen in the autumn in the winter, the doctor said she would’ve died immediately. The reason she survived was because she had a, a sort of pull a jumper on and a, and a heavy coat. And that was the difference.
Terence Mauri (14:06): Wow. In terms of sort of dying immediately or just acting as that sort of buffer. So again, I think, you know, we, sometimes we, we run our organizations, we live our lives, like on a kind of autopilot and it’s never been easier to waste time, waste time in the wrong priorities and the wrong goals. And for me, what it gave is a sort of sense of being fully present and this idea of attention. Cause I think attention, our attention spans under attack by technology. And, and so I think, yeah, a key takeaway was that attention, attention is one of the rarest and pure and purest forms of generosity. And we need to protect it and cultivate
Sean Pillot de Chenecey (14:49): It. Yeah. Yeah. And that did the issue about sort of living in the moment and all the rest of it?
Terence Mauri (14:54): Yes, exactly
Sean Pillot de Chenecey (14:55): How interesting. Wow. Okay. So in terms of, and you mentioned sort of, and then over the, the sort of preceding years then, you know, giving these talks meetings, fascinating people, you know, hanging out with Elon Musks of the world is there any particular, you know, achievement along that, that line that you look back on, think, you know what, wow. That was bang on the money. That’s the one I’m really, really proud about. And I talk about in a bar or a party, you,
Terence Mauri (15:20): I think I, I mean, I’m constantly being inspired learning from change makers and innovators and revolution around the world. I recently interviewed a 16 year old girl called Emma Yang. She’s a MIT mm-hmm,
Sean Pillot de Chenecey (15:38):
Terence Mauri (15:38): 16, 16 years old. That gives you a sense of her intellect. And, you know, I think there’s a lot of negativity around the age of disruption. I actually called it the age of wander, the age of possibility. And so Emma Yang is a great example of that. She’s 16 years old. She basically her grandmother was diagnosed with dementia, dementia, you know, from Alzheimer’s is a ticking time bomb. According to who the world health organization, every three minutes, somebody’s diagnosed with dementia for Emma Yang, she actually framed that as a, as a kind of hypotheses as a, as a problem to be solved. And what she’s done is from scratch within 12 months, invented an app called timeless. And the purpose of the app is to help people, people diagnose with dementia to sort of protect that sense of belonging. So the app uses geotagging.
Terence Mauri (16:34): So for example, when the grandmother walks too far away, the family would be alerted and be able to see exactly where she is. Mm-Hmm
Terence Mauri (17:33): But at the age of 83, she decided to hold a family meeting. And she announced that she wanted to study English at university fantastic. And nobody was gonna stop her. And she got accepted. And when she graduated, she was twice as old as the professor
Sean Pillot de Chenecey (18:23):
Terence Mauri (19:03): Yes. So, you know, as I said it’s a tsunami of change right now. There’s big disruptors on the horizon. And they’re combining, combining and accelerating in significant ways, whether it’s the blurring of industry lines or exponential technologies or shrinking of company lifespans and product lifespans. And I think, you know, there’s a couple of strategies. One is the leadership team have to have a clear point of view on what those disruptors are, so that they can then devise a strategy to turn those disruptors into opportunities, but also to leverage those different trends, hard trends, soft trends, and translate them into, into growth. And so I would suggest a couple of strategies. Number one is to master the new logic of competition. What I mean by that is the, the competitive lines are becoming blurred. Tesla is moving into insurance. Airbnb is moving into home loans.
Terence Mauri (20:03): Goldman Sachs is moving into B2C banking. Amazon is moving into everything. So you’ve gotta be clear about what is it that you stand for. And that means purpose. Everybody talks about purpose. But I think there’s a new type of purpose purpose point at 2.0 purpose. 1.0 was about maximizing shareholder value. It was sort of what I call selfish, capitalist purpose purpose. 2.0 is about maximizing social and business value. Meaning is the new money. And so that would be the first strategy, because if you’ve got a strong purpose as an organization, you know, your why, and you walk it at scale, having that strong purpose, it’s an Energizer, it’s a simplifier, it’s a clarifier also uncertain times require certainty of purpose and for our CFOs and finance directors, listening to this, you know, there is a financial benefit to having a clearly definable purpose as well. For example a recent study I was involved in at London business school showed that return on equity for purpose driven companies was around 13, 1% compared to non purpose driven companies around 3.1% engagement levels, innovation levels as well were like around 67%. Mm-Hmm
Sean Pillot de Chenecey (21:26):
Terence Mauri (21:56): It’s an, I think it’s an interesting question. And there is a lot of debate around that. My, my personal point of view is that just at a very human level, when you’ve, when you’ve got a purpose in your life for example, you know, every leader I’ve interviewed when they’ve got a strong purpose that north star, which acts as a guide, I mean, you know, your, your purpose and your customer’s purpose is your north star and should prioritize your priorities, your decisions, and all of your moral and ethical decisions as well. So I think a strong purpose has a moral imperative. But aligned to that, I would also add that I think another strategy to thrive in this age of disruption is to harness the power of diversity, not just diversity of gender. Yeah. But neurodiversity diversity of thinking styles, diversity of perspectives, because the truth is if you look at most boards of, of footy 100 or fortune 500 companies, there’s still predominantly MP male pale and stale. And, and so diversity is a superpower. Mm.
Sean Pillot de Chenecey (23:11): I think that that’s so fascinating that angle of diversity of perspectives the sort of cognitive sort of reasoning and thinking as opposed to purely having almost like a, a mental picture of, of the UN, which tends to be, I think the way it is stereotypically portrayed.
Terence Mauri (23:26): The doyen of disruption, Professor Clayton Christensen who sadly passed away late
Terence Mauri (23:32): Yes. He, you know, he was, he was famous for, on his, on the door to his, his his his room, his office, he it said anomaly is welcome.
Sean Pillot de Chenecey (24:50): Okay. Just the last few points. And perhaps come back to that cause is really, really interesting. In terms of conferences and events I can think like many brands, people say there’s very little differentiation between most brands in most sectors, and, you know, you it’s, you know, it’s a real, real issue there. The accusation is often put to also towards a world of conferences in terms of which ones are really impactful and useful and probably dynamic and you know, who, which speakers are, people genuinely remember rest of it. So from your point of view, and obviously you’ve given talks around the world, mm-hmm,
Terence Mauri (25:40): Yes. I mean, there’s true. There’s thousands of conferences every year. And I think the ones that stand out for me are the ones that ask more questions and give answers. And it’s something that I, I endeavor to do, which is, I think when this sort of age of disruption where, you know, we’re at peak levels of uncertainty and complexity and speed and noise, actually questions are the answer and what the, so the, the best conferences I’ve attended and spoken at. And what I endeavor to do in my own style is ask what I call catalytic questions, catalytic questions, questions that perhaps have not been asked before. I truly believe that new types of questions are the golden key to open the door in a different way. They can reframe how you think they can help you reimagine what is possible. So, you know, what will it take to win in the twenties?
Terence Mauri (26:33): How do you fight complexity with simplicity or which old mindsets assumptions or operating models do you need to eliminate or, or, or kill off mm-hmm
Sean Pillot de Chenecey (27:30): Very good. So the last couple of things, and it’s been super long Terence is that case. So so here we are. So, you know maybe sort of 2020, what’s next on the horizon for you, any sort of big events coming up or big things that, that are coming down the track.
Terence Mauri (27:46): Yeah. So I’m excited to announce that I’ve got a new book being published this summer with the FT Publishing. Yeah. It’s called The 3d Leader: How to Take Your Leadership to the Next Dimension. Nice. And it’s basically a new new toolkit to provide leaders with a new way of thinking a new way of doing, focusing on elements, such as thinking 10 X, not 10%, for example, and fighting complexity, not with complexity, but fighting complexity with simplicity.
Sean Pillot de Chenecey (28:20): Fantastic. I love that. Wow. Okay. And see, that’s out this summer,
Terence Mauri (28:24): That’s out this summer and then actually I have a follow-up, I have my third book due out in 2021 with Bloomsbury. Yeah. And that’s called The Rebel Leader. Mm-Hmm
Sean Pillot de Chenecey (29:23): Fantastic.
Terence Mauri (29:50): There are three, there are three keynotes that showcase my latest thinking and help leaders accelerate, talk into action but also give them actionable takeaways. So my first talk is called hack the future. And then, and what it does is give leaders immediately, immediately immediately useful hacks to turn disruption into opportunity. That’s keynote. Number one, keynote number two is called the disruption mindset. And it asks this question, what are the mindsets skill sets and tool sets to think an act like a disruptor that’s keynote number two. And then finally my signature keynote is called survival thrive in the age of AI. And this idea that you know, tech is transforming every aspect of our lives. And so what this talking dev is to do is outline the mega trends on the horizon, and then provide our listeners, our leaders with some actionable plan, actionable plans to accelerate their strategies and future proof, their businesses
Sean Pillot de Chenecey (31:03): Sounds fantastic. Well, look will Terence Mauri, magazine columnist thought leader, renowned speaker and bestselling author soon to be author also of the fascinating sounding 3d Leader, which will be out say during the summer of 2020 followed by The Rebel Leader in 2021. Thank you so much for joining us.
Terence Mauri (31:24): Thanks for having me, Sean,
Sean Pillot de Chenecey (31:30): Thank you for listening to The Speaker Show podcast. Please leave a rating on iTunes. We’d really appreciate it. And also it’d be great. If you could subscribe to the podcast itself, you’ll find it also on Google podcasts, SoundCloud, or your favorite podcast app. Thank you.
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Sean Pillot de Chenecey
Foresight strategist, author and podcast host Sean Pillot de Chenecey is an inspirational speaker, who’s also consulted for some of the world’s biggest brands.
Sean has a very deep level of knowledge regarding the genuine issues impacting brands from a cultural, social and business perspective.