The sporting world was turned upside down several times in 2016 not least when those lovable losers Chicago Cubs finally buried the curse by winning the World Series. Or, what about the just-as-unlikely English Premier League Championship win by Leicester City? Then there was the historic come-from-three-games-down win by the Cleveland Cavaliers over the almost-invincible Golden State Warriors who’d set a record for most wins in an NBA season, only to blow it to a team from a place known as the Mistake on the Lake. Disruptions indeed.
Of course the political world really gave us our biggest disruption with the election of The Donald to U.S. President - a change which still causes apoplectic fits to many. That one transformative act alone could well define modern disruption due to its world-wide effect. But don’t forget the other great political upheaval called Brexit as Great Britain chose to sever important ties to the European Union. Add the death of Castro into the mix, which is causing endless theorizing about western hemisphere politics, and 2016 brought us tremendous political changes.
The economy, too, continues to disrupt. Witness the unexpected and unprecedented rise of the U.S. stock market following Trump’s win. Or, how about the so-called “gig” economy where the mystical and mysterious Internet of Things continues to engulf us? By the way did you know there is actually a wireless connected toaster? I don’t know about you but I’m not sure I want some foreign hacker messing with my English muffin settings. Of course, the freelance economy continues to disrupt the traditional workplace. It’s estimated that almost 30% of U.S. workers currently self-identify as freelance or contract employees and that number is only expected to grow.
These are just a few examples of recent disruptions. There are plenty more from all walks of life and maybe you’ve experienced a few of your own? I certainly have but I don’t consider that a bad thing. In fact the older I get the more I appreciate disruption. I don’t fear change and, in fact, I believe it is instrumental to living a rewarding, holistic life. Disruption has led me to some very interesting places and I continue to look for more.
So let’s raise our glass and give a toast to more disruption in 2017. With that in mind I share with you a few interesting web sites that help keep me a little off balance and may, if you’re so inclined, help you embrace disruption and keep the status quo at bay. I wish that for you, and a Happy New Year, too.