Want a life vision? Disrupt the advice market
March 29th, 2012
10:28 AM ET

Want a life vision? Disrupt the advice market

Editor’s Note: Priya Parker, an expert-in-residence at the Harvard Innovation Lab, is the founder of Thrive Labs, a visioning and strategy advisory firm based in Brooklyn, New York. You can follow Priya on Twitter @priyaparker.

By Priya Parker - Special to CNN

Companies like TripAdvisor, Yelp, and Amazon.com have created powerful tools to help us gather advice on seemingly everything - where to sleep, what to eat, and what to read. But have you ever noticed that the boom in peer-to-peer advice has tended to skip over the more important decisions we make - what kind of work to do, whom to marry, how best to live?

One could argue that these matters should be kept far away from anything to do with startups and technology. Perhaps, you would say, advice is and should remain the job of your parents, priests and peers.

But what if you could keep these sources of advice constant, but use new tools and structures to improve the quality of counsel that you receive? FULL POST

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Topics: Innovation
Millennials prioritizing productivity over purpose
March 19th, 2012
08:00 AM ET

Millennials prioritizing productivity over purpose

Editor's Note: Priya Parker, an expert-in-residence at the Harvard Innovation Lab, is the founder of Thrive Labs, a visioning and strategy advisory firm based in Brooklyn, New York. You can follow Priya on Twitter @priyaparker.

By Priya Parker - Special to CNN

In the last few weeks alone, we’ve heard this rising generation called everything from the Go-Nowhere Generation and the MacGyver and DIY Generation to Generation Stuck and Generation Flux. In recent years, the generation most commonly known as the Millennials has also been described as Generation Me, Generation We, the Trophy Kids, the Boomerang Generation and the Dumbest Generation. (Ouch).

If one theme runs through these different pieces, it’s that people really like to name this generation. (I am guilty of injecting my own label into the mix last week, when I wrote a piece on the Global Public Square casting my cohort as Generation FOMO. We are held together, I argued, by a shared tendency to make decisions based on the fear of missing out on something around the corner.)

As part of my job, I work with talented Millennials on building alternative future strategies. They often come to me feeling burned out and unsure how to make their mark in the world. We work together to think strategically and soulfully - yes, you can do both! - about the kind of future they wish to build.

In this work, I’ve found that, whatever you call them, many Millennials are inhibited by anxieties peculiar to our time. I’ve already spoken of the FOMO problem. In this post, I want to share some of the other blockages that Millennials tell me afflict them. Next week, I will share techniques that I’ve found helpful in overcoming FOMO and these other inhibitors of building, creating and doing. FULL POST

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Topics: Culture • Innovation • Strategy
Millennials paralyzed by choice
A crowd at the interactive festival at the Austin Convention Center from the 2010 South by Southwest Conference held in Austin, Texas.
March 8th, 2012
06:30 PM ET

Millennials paralyzed by choice

Editor’s Note: Priya Parker, an expert-in-residence at the Harvard Innovation Lab, is the founder of Thrive Labs, a visioning and strategy advisory firm based in Brooklyn, New York. You can follow Priya on Twitter  @priyaparker.

By Priya Parker – Special to CNN

If January is when the old guard gathers in Davos, Switzerland, March is when the new guard descends on Austin, Texas. At a time of crisis in America, Europe, the Middle East and beyond, a group of tech-savvy do-gooders meets, greets and tweets at South By Southwest.

The conference has experienced a surge in popularity in recent years, exploring questions well beyond the sphere of technology. The several hundred panels and featured sessions for this year’s SXSW Interactive tend to reflect the current concerns of the rising elite. In this post, I’d like to add one concern to their list: Can the avid, accomplished doers at SXSW show the way for a rising generation of Millennials who are all too often afraid to fulfill their potential as leaders? FULL POST

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Topics: Innovation • Technology • Youth
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