We increasingly make decisions based on short-term goals and gains — an approach that makes the future more uncertain and less safe. How can we learn to think about and plan for a better future in the long term … like, grandchildren-scale long term? Ari Wallach shares three tactics for thinking beyond the immediate.


アリ・ウォラックは、目先のことを超えて考えるための 3 つの戦術を紹介します。

3 ways to plan for the (very) long term
(非常に) 長期的な計画を立てる 3 つの方法
スピーカー アリ・ウォラック
アップロード 2017/05/05

「(非常に) 長期的な計画を立てる 3 つの方法(3 ways to plan for the (very) long term)」の文字起こし

So I’ve been “futuring,” which is a term I made up — about three seconds ago. I’ve been futuring for about 20 years, and when I first started, I would sit down with people, and say, “Hey, let’s talk 10, 20 years out.” And they’d say, “Great.” And I’ve been seeing that time horizon get shorter and shorter and shorter, so much so that I met with a CEO two months ago and I said — we started our initial conversation. He goes, “I love what you do. I want to talk about the next six months.”

We have a lot of problems that we are facing. These are civilizational-scale problems. The issue though is, we can’t solve them using the mental models that we use right now to try and solve these problems. Yes, a lot of great technical work is being done, but there is a problem that we need to solve for a priori, before, if we want to really move the needle on those big problems. “Short-termism.” Right? There’s no marches. There’s no bracelets. There’s no petitions that you can sign to be against short-termism. I tried to put one up, and no one signed. It was weird.

But it prevents us from doing so much. Short-termism, for many reasons, has pervaded every nook and cranny of our reality. I just want you to take a second and just think about an issue that you’re thinking, working on. It could be personal, it could be at work or it could be move-the-needle world stuff, and think about how far out you tend to think about the solution set for that. Because short-termism prevents the CEO from buying really expensive safety equipment. It’ll hurt the bottom line. So we get the Deepwater Horizon. Short-termism prevents teachers from spending quality one-on-one time with their students. So right now in America, a high school student drops out every 26 seconds. Short-termism prevents Congress — sorry if there’s anyone in here from Congress — or not really that sorry — from putting money into a real infrastructure bill. So what we get is the I-35W bridge collapse over the Mississippi a few years ago, 13 killed.

It wasn’t always like this. We did the Panama Canal. We pretty much have eradicated global polio. We did the transcontinental railroad, the Marshall Plan. And it’s not just big, physical infrastructure problems and issues. Women’s suffrage, the right to vote. But in our short-termist time, where everything seems to happen right now and we can only think out past the next tweet or timeline post, we get hyper-reactionary. So what do we do? We take people who are fleeing their war-torn country, and we go after them. We take low-level drug offenders, and we put them away for life. And then we build McMansions without even thinking about how people are going to get between them and their job. It’s a quick buck.

Now, the reality is, for a lot of these problems, there are some technical fixes, a lot of them. I call these technical fixes sandbag strategies. So you know there’s a storm coming, the levee is broken, no one’s put any money into it, you surround your home with sandbags. And guess what? It works. Storm goes away, the water level goes down, you get rid of the sandbags, and you do this storm after storm after storm. And here’s the insidious thing. A sandbag strategy can get you reelected. A sandbag strategy can help you make your quarterly numbers.

Now, if we want to move forward into a different future than the one we have right now, because I don’t think we’ve hit — 2016 is not peak civilization.

There’s some more we can do. But my argument is that unless we shift our mental models and our mental maps on how we think about the short, it’s not going to happen. So what I’ve developed is something called “longpath,” and it’s a practice.

And longpath isn’t a kind of one-and-done exercise. I’m sure everyone here at some point has done an off-site with a lot of Post-It notes and whiteboards, and you do — no offense to the consultants in here who do that — and you do a long-term plan, and then two weeks later, everyone forgets about it. Right? Or a week later. If you’re lucky, three months. It’s a practice because it’s not necessarily a thing that you do. It’s a process where you have to revisit different ways of thinking for every major decision that you’re working on. So I want to go through those three ways of thinking.

So the first: transgenerational thinking. I love the philosophers: Plato, Socrates, Habermas, Heidegger. I was raised on them. But they all did one thing that didn’t actually seem like a big deal until I really started kind of looking into this. And they all took, as a unit of measure for their entire reality of what it meant to be virtuous and good, the single lifespan, from birth to death. But here’s a problem with these issues: they stack up on top of us, because the only way we know how to do something good in the world is if we do it between our birth and our death. That’s what we’re programmed to do. If you go to the self-help section in any bookstore, it’s all about you. Which is great, unless you’re dealing with some of these major issues.

And so with transgenerational thinking, which is really kind of transgenerational ethics, you’re able to expand how you think about these problems, what is your role in helping to solve them. Now, this isn’t something that just has to be done at the Security Council chamber. It’s something that you can do in a very kind of personal way. So every once in a while, if I’m lucky, my wife and I like to go out to dinner, and we have three children under the age of seven. So you can imagine it’s a very peaceful, quiet meal.

So we sit down and literally all I want to do is just eat and chill, and my kids have a completely and totally different idea of what we’re going to be doing. And so my first idea is my sandbag strategy, right? It’s to go into my pocket and take out the iPhone and give them “Frozen” or some other bestselling game thing. And then I stop and I have to kind of put on this transgenerational thinking cap. I don’t do this in the restaurant, because it would be bizarre, but I have to — I did it once, and that’s how I learned it was bizarre.

And you have to kind of think, “OK, I can do this.” But what is this teaching them? So what does it mean if I actually bring some paper or engage with them in conversation? It’s hard. It’s not easy, and I’m making this very personal. It’s actually more traumatic than some of the big issues that I work on in the world — entertaining my kids at dinner. But what it does is it connects them here in the present with me, but it also — and this is the crux of transgenerational thinking ethics — it sets them up to how they’re going to interact with their kids and their kids and their kids.

Second, futures thinking. When we think about the future, 10, 15 years out, give me a vision of what the future is. You don’t have to give it to me, but think in your head. And what you’re probably going to see is the dominant cultural lens that dominates our thinking about the future right now: technology. So when we think about the problems, we always put it through a technological lens, a tech-centric, a techno-utopia, and there’s nothing wrong with that, but it’s something that we have to really think deeply about if we’re going to move on these major issues, because it wasn’t always like this. Right? The ancients had their way of thinking about what the future was. The Church definitely had their idea of what the future could be, and you could actually pay your way into that future. Right? And luckily for humanity, we got the scientific revolution. From there, we got the technology, but what has happened — And by the way, this is not a critique. I love technology. Everything in my house talks back to me, from my children to my speakers to everything.

But we’ve abdicated the future from the high priests in Rome to the high priests of Silicon Valley. So when we think, well, how are we going to deal with climate or with poverty or homelessness, our first reaction is to think about it through a technology lens.

And look, I’m not advocating that we go to this guy. I love Joel, don’t get me wrong, but I’m not saying we go to Joel. What I’m saying is we have to rethink our base assumption about only looking at the future in one way, only looking at it through the dominant lens. Because our problems are so big and so vast that we need to open ourselves up. So that’s why I do everything in my power not to talk about the future. I talk about futures. It opens the conversation again.

So when you’re sitting and thinking about how do we move forward on this major issue — it could be at home, it could be at work, it could be again on the global stage — don’t cut yourself off from thinking about something beyond technology as a fix because we’re more concerned about technological evolution right now than we are about moral evolution. And unless we fix for that, we’re not going to be able to get out of short-termism and get to where we want to be.

The final, telos thinking. This comes from the Greek root. Ultimate aim and ultimate purpose. And it’s really asking one question: to what end? When was the last time you asked yourself: To what end? And when you asked yourself that, how far out did you go? Because long isn’t long enough anymore. Three, five years doesn’t cut it. It’s 30, 40, 50, 100 years.

In Homer’s epic, “The Odyssey,” Odysseus had the answer to his “what end.” It was Ithaca. It was this bold vision of what he wanted — to return to Penelope. And I can tell you, because of the work that I’m doing, but also you know it intuitively — we have lost our Ithaca. We have lost our “to what end,” so we stay on this hamster wheel. And yes, we’re trying to solve these problems, but what comes after we solve the problem? And unless you define what comes after, people aren’t going to move.

The businesses — this isn’t just about business — but the businesses that do consistently, who break out of short-termism not surprisingly are family-run businesses. They’re transgenerational. They’re telos. They think about the futures. And this is an ad for Patek Philippe. They’re 175 years old, and what’s amazing is that they literally embody this kind of longpathian sense in their brand, because, by the way, you never actually own a Patek Philippe, and I definitely won’t —

Unless somebody wants to just throw $25,000 on the stage. You merely look after it for the next generation. So it’s important that we remember, the future, we treat it like a noun. It’s not. It’s a verb. It requires action. It requires us to push into it. It’s not this thing that washes over us. It’s something that we actually have total control over. But in a short-term society, we end up feeling like we don’t. We feel like we’re trapped. We can push through that.

Now I’m getting more comfortable in the fact that at some point in the inevitable future, I will die. But because of these new ways of thinking and doing, both in the outside world and also with my family at home, and what I’m leaving my kids, I get more comfortable in that fact. And it’s something that a lot of us are really uncomfortable with, but I’m telling you, think it through. Apply this type of thinking and you can push yourself past what’s inevitably very, very uncomfortable.

And it all begins really with yourself asking this question: What is your longpath? But I ask you, when you ask yourself that now or tonight or behind a steering wheel or in the boardroom or the situation room: push past the longpath, quick, oh, what’s my longpath the next three years or five years? Try and push past your own life if you can because it makes you do things a little bit bigger than you thought were possible. Yes, we have huge, huge problems out there. With this process, with this thinking, I think we can make a difference. I think you can make a difference, and I believe in you guys. Thank you.

「(非常に) 長期的な計画を立てる 3 つの方法(3 ways to plan for the (very) long term)」の和訳



しかし、短期主義は私たちがたくさんのことを行えなくさせています。多くの理由から、短期主義は私たちの現実のあらゆる隅々に浸透しています。ほんの一瞬、あなたが取り組んでいる問題について考えてみてください。それは個人的なものでも、職場のものでも、大きな問題でも構いません。その問題の解決策についてどれくらい遠くを見据えているかを考えてみてください。短期主義のせいで、CEOは非常に高価な安全装置を購入することを躊躇します。それは収益を傷つけますからね。そうすると、ディープウォーター・ホライズン事件が起こります。短期主義のせいで、教師は生徒との質の高い1対1の時間を過ごすことをためらいます。だから、現在アメリカでは、高校生が26秒ごとに中退しています。短期主義のせいで、議会 – もしここに議会からの人がいたら、すみませんが – 本当はあまりすみませんが – 本当のインフラ整備法案にお金を投入しません。その結果、数年前にミシシッピ川のI-35W橋が崩落し、13人が亡くなりました。

以前はこうではありませんでした。パナマ運河を作りました。世界的にポリオを根絶しました。横断大陸鉄道、マーシャルプランもやりました。そして、大規模な物理的なインフラの問題や課題だけでなく、女性の参政権、投票権も実現しました。しかし、私たちが短期主義になった時代では、すべてが今すぐ起こり、次のツイートやタイムラインの投稿を超えて考えることができなくなっています。だから、何をするのでしょうか? 戦争で荒廃した国から逃れてきた人々を攻撃します。 低レベルの麻薬犯罪者を逮捕し、終身刑にします。 そして、人々がその仕事との間をどのように移動するか考えることなく、マクマンションを建てます。 それはすぐに稼げるものです。

今、現実は、これらの問題の多くにはいくつかの技術的な解決策があります。私はこれらの技術的な解決策を砂袋戦略と呼んでいます。だから、嵐が来ることがわかっている、堤防が壊れている、誰もお金をかけていない、あなたの家を砂袋で囲みます。そして、なんと? それはうまくいきます。 嵐が去り、水位が下がり、砂袋を取り除き、嵐が去った後も同じことを繰り返します。 そして、悪質なことはここにあります。砂袋戦略は再選されることができます。 砂袋戦略は四半期の数字を達成するのに役立ちます。

今、もし私たちが現在のものとは異なる未来に向かいたいと思うのであれば、2016年は最高点ではないと思いますが、それには何かできることがあります。 しかし、私の主張は、私たちが短期について考える心のモデルと心の地図を変えない限り、それは起こらないということです。 だから私が開発したのは、「ロングパス」と呼ばれるもので、これは実践です。




座って、文字通り私がやりたいことはただ食べてリラックスすることだけなのですが、私の子供たちは完全に違う考えを持っています。だから、私の最初のアイデアは、砂袋戦略ですよね? 私はポケットからiPhoneを取り出し、彼らに「アナと雪の女王」や他の売れ筋ゲームを与えることです。そして、私は立ち止まって、この世代を超えた考え方の帽子をかぶらなければならないのです。レストランでやるわけではありません。それは奇妙なことになるからです。実際、一度やったことがあり、それが奇妙だと気づいたのです。

そして、自分自身に「これをやってもいいかもしれない」と考えなければなりません。しかし、実際に紙を持ってきたり、会話をして彼らと関わると、それは彼らに何を教えるのでしょうか? これは難しいことです。それは簡単ではありません。これを非常に個人的なものにしていますが、これは実際に私が世界で取り組んでいるいくつかの大きな問題よりもトラウマです。子供たちを夕食で楽しませること。しかし、これが行うことで、彼らを今ここで私と結びつけるだけでなく、これが世代を超えた思考倫理の肝心なところです。彼らが将来、自分の子供たち、その子供たち、その子供たちとどのように関わるかを示しています。

次に、未来を考えることです。10年、15年先の未来を考えてみてください。未来がどのようなものかを想像してみてください。私に教える必要はありませんが、頭の中で考えてみてください。そして、おそらく私たちが今の未来についての考え方を支配している支配的な文化的レンズを見るでしょう:テクノロジーです。ですから、私たちが問題を考えるとき、私たちは常にそれを技術のレンズ、テクノ中心、テクノユートピアの視点を通して見る傾向があります。これには何の問題もありませんが、これらの大きな問題に取り組もうとするなら、これについて深く考えなければなりません。なぜなら、昔はこうではありませんでした。古代人は未来を考える方法を持っていました。教会は確かに将来がどうなるかについてのアイデアを持っていましたし、あなたは実際にその未来に自分の道を買うことができました。幸運なことに、人類は科学革命を経験しました。そこから、テクノロジーが得られました。しかし、何が起こったのでしょうか – これは批判ではありません。テクノロジーが大好きです。私の家のすべてが私に返答します。私の子供からスピーカーまで。



だから、大きな問題について前進する方法を考えているとき – それは家庭であるかもしれませんし、職場であるかもしれませんし、再び世界的な舞台であるかもしれません – 技術以外の解決策について考えることを遮断しないでください。なぜなら、現在、技術の進化よりも道徳の進化について心配しているからです。そして、それに対処しない限り、短期主義から脱し、私たちが望む場所にたどり着くことはできません。


ホメロスの叙事詩「オデュッセイア」では、オデュッセウスは自分の「どこに向かって?」に答えを持っていました。それはイタカ島でした。彼が望んだ大胆なビジョンでした – ペネロペに戻ることです。私がしている仕事のおかげで、そしてあなたも直感的に知っていますが、私たちはイタカを失っています。私たちは私たちの「どこに向かって?」を失っているので、私たちはこのハムスターホイールに留まります。そして、はい、私たちはこれらの問題を解決しようとしていますが、問題を解決した後に何が起こるのか?そして、その後に何が起こるかを定義しない限り、人々は動かないでしょう。

ビジネス – これはビジネスに関してだけではありません – 短期主義から一貫して脱出する企業は、驚くべきことに、家族経営の企業です。それらは多世代の企業です。それらはテロスです。彼らは未来を考えます。そして、これはパテック・フィリップの広告です。彼らは175歳ですが、驚くべきことは、彼らが実際に彼らのブランドにこの種のロングパス的な感覚を具現化していることです。ところで、あなたは実際にはパテック・フィリップを所有していませんし、私も絶対に所有しないでしょう。