Communication Breakdown


      Well, if I am going to be too busy lecturing around Austin to give you a new book recommendation every day, or otherwise write a post, maybe I can throw a provocative question your way.  Working with the students actually has my mind more active than ever, trying to think of new ways of seeing things.

     So try this one:

     What has been the impact of the global rise of cell phones? 

     You can start with the most obvious things, like turning AT&T’s world upside down and providing huge opportunities to succeed and fail to Motorola and Nokia.  But go deeper:

     Do people talk to each other more or less?

     How have our lives become better because of the phones?  Worse?

     Are decisions made faster or slower?

     Do people remember more or fewer of their friends’ phone numbers?

     What manual skills have become more popular or important?  (Remember that 50 years ago almost no CEOs could type; the personal computer changed that!)

     Are we divided into new classes (smartphone, blackberry, dumbphone, nophone)?  If so, what is different about the lives of the people in these different classes?

     What has changed about the nature of the content of the conversations?

     …and 100 more questions (and maybe answers) of your own making?

     …and of course, what are the implications of all this?  What are the entrepreneurial opportunities?