Don't Predict The Future --- MAKE The Future In 2020

This is the time of year when columnists and pundits bore you to death with their predictions for the coming year.  Reading these can be the least valuable way you spend your time.  

I’ve been writing predictions for 20 years now (ever since I started writing this column in 2000), but this year I will spare you with what I foresee.  Instead, I’m going to make a simple request from each of you.

As you enter 2020, I would ask you set aside some of your time to improve the world around you.  

All of us work in media, marketing and advertising.  All of us have an influence in what the world sees.  I am honestly inspired by seeing the efforts of my friend and colleague, Ian Schafer as he launches Kindred, which aims to link influencers and nonprofits.

I am inspired when I read about the TD Foundation created by Tom Deierlein, which helps veterans’ families.

I was inspired this morning by seeing OneRepublic perform at a corporate event for the company I work at and hearing singer Ryan Tedder tell stories about the things the group is doing to improve the world around them.  



These are people who are as busy as I am and yet they find the time to make the world a better place.  I am even inspired by my wife, who started a company to focus on sustainable corporate merchandise.

 Why can’t I do the same?  Why can’t we all do the same?

Many of us have been in media for a long time.  Some of you are newer to the business.  All of you have a pulpit and a sphere of influence.  All of us have the ability to make a difference.  

I personally want to have a more positive impact in 2020 and I request that you sit down and think about how you can do the same.  There are lots of ways you can do so.  Here are just a few examples for you think about:

Can you help your company have a reduced carbon footprint?  

Can you see what charitable organizations your company supports, and pledge to get involved?

Can you create awareness of charities you support by working with your media organization?

Can you have your company set aside paid time off for employees to get involved with charitable organizations?

Can you donate paper or technology to youth organizations and help them become more progressive in how they adopt technology or learn to express themselves in a positive way?

Can you get involved in education, either for youth or even for job retraining efforts so people can take advantage of the jobs afforded by high technology industries?

There are literally thousands of ways that media can change the world, and you are media.  You are the people responsible for the dissemination of information in the world today.  You can ensure that information is balanced, or you can use the power provided to you to leave a positive watermark on the world you inhabit.

In 2020, let’s not predict what the future will look like.  Let’s try spending time to actually make it what we want it to look like.  Also, take a second and check out the people and foundations mentioned above.  You will should be at least half as impressed and inspired as I was.

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