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The Mindset View of Everything

Over 6 years ago, I wrote about how Web 2.0 was better thought of as a philosophy, not a technology. (And then I wrote about it again.)

A couple years ago, I wrote about how UX is best approached as a mindset (not a process).

Internally at Adaptive Path, we’ve been talking a lot about service design, and I agree with my colleague Todd Wilkens that what’s most important in designing for service is to have a service mindset.

Pretty much everything I wrote about the Connected Age is one of mindset.

Clearly, I keep coming back to this idea. That mindset, perspective, and orientation is what is most important, most crucial, most fundamental in business. (And possibly all other parts of life.)

But it’s weird, because we’re never really taught how to think about mindsets. Even the word “mindset” (or “philosophy” or “perspective”) seems esoteric and abstract. Yet its application is what often separates success from failure.

How can we bring in to focus that which seems so ephemeral?

  1. Mindset is indeed the essential in directing our future… from personal to product to community to civilization. Ervin Laszlo’s book Macroshift tied it together best for me. Summarized a bit of it here: but it’s stuck with me as key to what the basis of action/community needs to be. In an age where on the one side we are trying to distill everything into metrics this stuff is more important than ever. As for bringing it into focus, though, I haven’t come across any examples that work other than ‘storytelling’. Will be interesting to see where you take this.

  2. Democrats are very happy with their mindsets, as are Republicans. Christian Fundamentalists are thrilled with theirs. As are Islamists.
    Whatever mindset you propose, it only boils down to a set mind. Growth is a process. Look at our toddlers and find their mindset. As they acquire mindsets, they inhibit growth. That goes for any mindset. Any mindset. And I repeat: any mindset. Study their process and see how you can apply it to your growth. Write that book.

  3. In my own writing and conversation, I’ve referenced mindset fairly often, since I first started bplusd in 2005, and agree that it’s often the missing piece of the puzzle. For a less wonky way of talking about the same thing, Fred Collopy and Dick Boland describe a “design attitude” vs. a “business attitude” in Managing as Designing.

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