Ex-lawyer turned relationship coach

New Technology Brings Great Promise, But Also Great Disruption

When the first trains started riding the rails, loyal miners and demolition men lost their tunnelings jobs to the new steam drill. Many protested, but only one challenged the machine to a contest.

This challenger was John Henry and he wasn’t afraid of any man or machine.

“If I dig deeper into this mountain than your drill, everyone gets to stay on the rail,” said John.

The railroad boss accepted the terms and pushed the steam drill up against the mountain.

John braced himself and lifted his 20-pound sledgehammer above his head.

A whistle sounded and the race began.

Again and again, the man kept hammering. Again and again, the drill kept drilling.

Man versus machine, one gasping for air and the other for steam.

The contest ended with a large crash. The steam drill had broken down. And shortly after, John’s heart did too.

Even though technology helps society as a whole, it hurts people like John Henry and his colleagues. People who lack the skills or knowledge to adapt.

Today, knowledge is abundant. But time is not.

Technology is progressing faster than ever. 3D printers, self driving cars, cryptocurrencies, all such technologies are creating new opportunities for those who are prepared, but are threatening the livelihoods of those who are unaware.

And you’re bound to be caught off guard, because there’s too many technologies to keep track of.

Once machines inevitably derail your career, simply learning new skills isn’t enough to put you back on track. Robots learn quicker than you.

What’s more, a wise man once said, “Everybody is a genius. But if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will live its whole life believing it’s stupid.”

The key to overcoming disruption is understanding what makes you special.

By Jeroen Elsing
Ex-lawyer turned relationship coach