When you think about the topic of this year’s EBS Symposium, “Adapting to Change – The Beginning of a New Era”? How does this relate to your new book? 

This is a timely and important topic. The premise of my book is fundamental, revolutionary change and disruption, which necessitates the preparation and adaptation of every one of us.

Students who graduate from college today may change careers up to fifteen times throughout their lives. Furthermore, it is estimated that over 60% of professions that post-millennials (born after 1997) will retire from do not even exist yet and that a third of the skills that will be important for jobs in the future are not yet relevant today. By 2030, more than one billion people may need to be reskilled. Industrial revolutions have historically not only presented challenges, but they have also afforded great opportunities. We cannot control the dynamics of technological progress, but we can control how we react to them. And I think that this conference and my book can provide valuable guidance on how to prepare for the changes ahead and how to seize on evolving opportunities.

What do you associate with the EBS Symposium in general?
Networks need platforms to form, expand, and strengthen. Shared values, interests, and experiences are the best pillars upon which practical and sustainable networks are based.

When you hear the Beginning of a New Era – what do you think of first?
Exponentially accelerating technologies are beginning to converge, reinforcing each other, such as artificial intelligence and supercomputing, for example. The resulting monumental implications prompted me to write a book about it.

Is a network a vast advantage in the business world, and why? Can the Symposium help to build such a network?
As I wrote in my books, $uperhubs, and Das Future-Proof Mindset, personal relationships and networks are the ultimate competitive advantage. If two people have the same qualifications, with the only difference being that one has access to a well-connected network, then that person will likely prevail over the person who does not have such relationships.

What advice would you give our participants, young, ambitious people, to follow in their life and career?
Realize that our most significant competitive advantage versus machines is our being human. Therefore, jobs requiring innately human traits that can’t be programmed into machines will remain the most valuable. Emotional intelligence (EQ) and social skills (SQ) rank at the top.

How did you get there where you are today?
Determination, resilience, and entrepreneurial thinking.

When did you decide to get into the branch where you are today?
It was not a conscious decision but an organic evolution based on a myriad of individual situational choices. Maybe I suffered from a lack of vision. Or perhaps I was ahead of time in terms of strategic foresight, sensing the complexity of dynamic forces interacting and the resulting frequency and magnitude of change. Nevertheless, staying fluid allowed me to seize opportunities and eventually land my dream job in New York City.

What are the most significant changes in the current business world?
The most significant changes are brought about by artificial intelligence and supercomputing. These technologies will increasingly come for – at least partially – classic middle-class, white-collar jobs so that highly educated people in positions that require cognitive abilities will have to cooperate with machines increasingly. That means that we have to develop our “digital IQ continuously.”

In comparison to the changes your generation has seen (internet and so on), how drastic do you believe the changes we will see will be? What might these changes be?
According to Moore’s s Law, these dynamics will likely further accelerate because computer performance doubles approximately every eighteen months while dropping in price. Skeptics criticize the continued application of Moore’s Law, arguing that technology is reaching its physical limits. However, even if performance were too slow, we should still assume that this development is set to perpetuate itself. This is because exponentially accelerating technologies begin to converge, reinforcing each other. For instance, drug development is accelerating because biotechnology, artificial intelligence, and quantum computing are converging.