Japanese version→

Mr. Taizo Son proposes making lunchtime “the time when employees show their creativity.” In the future, the office may turn into something like a cafe.

“Let’s all take on the challenge of creating a new business, without fear of failure!” Is this the sort of line you hear from the president at your company’s morning pep talks and meetings?

Rather than lifting the mood, it might leave many employees rolling their eyes. After all, the boss getting upset at mistakes is something we’ve all seen, and we all know that failing hurts your perceived value.

Nevertheless, bosses have a habit of saying, “don’t be afraid to fail.” I think this is contradictory. If bosses really felt that way, they would have to give out bonuses for failing, too. Whenever this is actually suggested, though, people generally respond, “Well, but, see…”

When we look to the coming era, it would seem that making new businesses succeed with the existing approaches and ideas is going to be increasingly difficult. So, what can we do?

In this series, I have suggested previously that artificial intelligence (AI) and robots will end up doing most of the work in the future.

(改ページ)

This might be a bit extreme, but I actually think that in the end, the only jobs that will be left for humans will be the ones in which we can bring our creativity to bear. For example, this could involve things like creating designs by coming up with ideas that go beyond the existing frameworks.

As for companies, they would generate ground-breaking ideas as efficiently as possible, accidentally. It’ll be necessary to create the mechanisms by which this will happen.

What’s best for creativity? The real, or the virtual?

In the TV world, the ultra-high resolution of 4K is starting to become popular, and the world of the even higher resolution of 8K isn’t that far off. The costs associated with screens are dropping, so it may be just a matter of time until one of the walls in your room is an 8K screen.

Make a Skype or TV phone call, and even though the other person is on a screen, you’ll forget that the screen is there at all. Apparently, the human eye apparently can’t tell the difference between images over 5K in resolution and physical objects.

Thus, we’ll be unable to distinguish between these images and the real thing, and we’ll be able to have conversations and meetings that feel like talking to real people. The era of meetings being done in the virtual world is coming soon.

If we’re talking about business meetings, this could be a good thing. As someone who has online meetings on a regular basis, I’ve always wondered whether there’s any value in getting together in the real world.

I’ve arrived at the conclusion, though, that there’s got to be some merit to meeting face-to-face. This is especially true when it comes to chatting while having a drink or having tea together.

“How are things these days?”
“I’ve been worried about this sort of thing.”
“Ah, I see. How about trying this?” “Whoa, what is that? Looks great.”
“OK, I’ll tell you all about it.”

It’s often the case that a little talk makes something change dramatically. It’s been the case in my experience, too.

New ideas don’t come out when you’re tediously chewing things over in a conference room.

Maybe it’s when you’re relaxed that revolutionary ideas are born.