Research leads to freedom

FREEDOM: Many individuals want to break free from corporate walls, familial boundaries and cultural structures. This, in fact, is the story of progress and also of experiencing depth. There are many systems of thought that offer paths to freedom. If one considers the interior of his/her psyche as akin to a corporate structure, then we can go further with a few metaphors that may be of help in finding freedom. Before getting into this though, it is vital to know that freedom comes from taking 100% responsibility for one’s own actions within a given context. This singular truth is the key to freedom. The intelligence gathering process for business and government provides leadership with clarity, security and power. And the best kind of power emerges from individuals who have taken 100% responsibility for the process of discovery and subsequent strategy.

INTELLIGENCE IS MAINSTREAM NOW: For our current article, we will take the market intelligence community and its function as a means to discovering freedom via responsibility. Market intelligence used to be a rarified action, not frequently discussed amongst co-workers on your average coffee break. In fact, in many traditional settings this is still true. But there are many forward-thinking corporations, communities and individuals who understand the power of deep intelligence on any given topic or interest. The market intelligence (MI) process has actually become more widespread in the corporate world due to the advent of social media monitoring tools like Radian6, BrandWatch, Sysomos and PeopleBrowsr. Even very basic Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest and Google searches provide the average man and woman a point of view previously unknown. For example, one may type keywords related to a specific interest into the search field at a social network and discover people nearby who share that interest. A new “in-the-flesh” experience becomes possible through such location-based searches related to an interest.

THE FIREFIGHTER AND FUTURIST: The advent of readily available intelligence brings humanity as a whole to an entirely new level of responsibility. Answers to most questions are at everyone’s fingertips. And this experience of responsibility translates into freedom for the corporation, the community and the individual. The process of going from a passive “bored at work” search for one’s passion to standing up from the chair and diving into a completely new life may be described as going from the “Firefighter” to the “Futurist”. To explain: the Firefighter is approaching an interest on an ad hoc basis, reacting to outside stimulus and “sitting at the station” waiting for an emergency. The Futurist is deeply engaged on both a global and local level, using intelligence to drive a process of rewarding, pro-active discovery. The Firefighter has no focus other than the emergency he reacts to…the Futurist is immersed in a broad, deep and future-oriented journey that draws in topics, people and places outside the immediately relevant environment. To be clear yet again on this comparison: the Futurist is creating the reality that the Firefighter often reacts to.

The Futurist has realized that reality may be defined ahead of the curve of fate or karma. While the consequences of an action take place within the boundaries of a specific world, the Futurist has moved on and discovered a completely novel experience, devoid of the content and context wherein the previous consequence was generated. He/she may then transform “the past” via valuable learnings, cultural understandings, and innovative approaches discovered “in the future”. A leading solution helping Futurists do this now is Recorded Future.

RESEARCH LEADS TO FREEDOM: The deepest importance of Market Intelligence has to do with creativity. When one discovers the complexion of an eco-system surrounding a specific interest, then he/she may tweak the elements of that eco-system and create what he/she wants. This is why researchers and business leaders must work hand-in-hand to shape our world. And this is also why it is inexcusable for any individual to say he/she cannot find a path to a dream. Even the simplest location-based search around an interest will place one in the company of others who have thrown themselves with passion into achieving very similar dreams to one’s own. Try this today, using the search fields in the various major social networks. Go deeper with social business intelligence tools.

A brief description of Social Business Intelligence

WHAT IS SOCIAL BUSINESS INTELLIGENCE: The basic concept behind the term “social intelligence” is to derive customer, competitive and market intelligence via data scanned in social networks, such as Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn.

THE NET RESULT OF A SOCIAL BUSINESS INTELLIGENCE PROJECT (WHAT YOU GET FROM A S.I. PROJECT): The value of a social intelligence project is manifold, including the following benefits:

• discovery of warm leads related to psychographics and demographics from a customer’s current database.

• discovery of current trends and developments in a market sector that could lead to product/service innovation.

• discovery of a competitor’s activities that may aid one’s sales efforts.

• discovery of what your customers talk about, leading to product/service innovation and changes in marketing/sales strategy/tactics.

• discovery of new regions where your product/service is being discussed and your competitors are making money.

• discovery of upcoming events where you could generate awareness and sales.

• discovery of new pools of customers in digital networks. You may not have been aware of these pools of customers and their interests.

• discovery of conversations that social marketers and community managers can enter and utilize for higher brand awareness and sales.

• discovery of vendors and employees via professional networks like LinkedIn or the European Women’s Professional Network.


WHO: Gathering social intelligence is best performed by someone trained in research. Although a great amount of data may be aggregated automatically during a social intelligence project, it takes a human being to segment and make sense of this data and create insights related to the data.

HOW: There are many tools used to gather social data. Some of the best are expensive and require additional training to master. One of the best ways for a novice to begin is to use Twitter and LinkedIn. After setting up accounts in both social properties, use the free tool Listorious to research lists of influencers surrounding specific keywords in Twitter. Be sure to sign up for an Executive Account in LinkedIn so you can use all of the features in the Advanced Search tool.

WHICH TOOLS: More advanced social intelligence tools include Radian6, Sysomos, BrandWatch, PeopleBrowsr, Crimson Hexagon, Recorded Future and Trackur. A comprehensive list of these and other social intelligence tools may be found here.

Cultural and Financial Revolution Makers

The efficiencies of particular tech communities, consciousness-communities and VC communities must now be applied to most governments and many aging industrialist-minded corporations (which seem to be guided more by nepotism and cronyism than intellect and foresight). A massive cultural “vacuum-cleaning” must now take place. Gen-Y is alive and kicking and we need the guidance of very particular classy, wise BabyBoomers as part of the revolution that we (humanity) can pull off “overnight”.

(Big Ideas from leading minds and doers – gather to think, disperse and act!)
Do-Lectures – (Big Ideas from leading minds and doers – gather to think, disperse and act!)
Esalen – (Consciousness and Psychology)
Omega Center – (Consciousness and Wellness)
Singularity U. – (Man-Machine relationship)
FELD – (VC thought-leader, Owner of Foundry Group)

TechStars – – (Seed Money VC)
A16z – – (Elite, Theme-Focused VC)
Foundry Group – (Elite, Theme-Focused VC)
KPCB – (Large VC)

GIVEO (Social Good and Giving Solutions)
Egg Strategy – (Qualitative Research)
FelixBNI – (Branding Strategy)
Organic – (Full Service Agency)
Gartner – (Best Business Intelligence in the world)
PeopleBrowsr – (Leading Social Intelligence platform)

A Living Myth: Collective Intelligence yields Collective Action

A COLLECTIVE REALIZATION: Humanity is collectively facing James Hillman’s dilemma in The Soul’s Code, where he says, “I can no longer be sure whether the psyche is in me or whether I’m in the psyche…” The national and personal borders that were so vital to identity are increasingly tested by swiftly advancing uncertainties. At the core is a mass realization by a culture engrossed in materialistic pursuit that perhaps, just maybe, something more is afoot.

“All great civilizations when they were flourishing had a living myth,” Marie-Louise von Franz (in above video clip on her work with Carl Jung).

The most popular films and books are stories centered around beings that have entered human experience from another realm. One only need look at the highest grossing films and bestseller lists to see that humanity yearns to be in touch with powers known by our forebears. Individuals want the pinnacle of Maslow’s pyramid and want it now. Our passage collectively will be via an alchemical and very hot journey, characterized by every emotion and, hopefully, resulting in a catharsis that leaves a handful of enlightened forefathers for successive generations. We will not fly to other galaxies until we plumb the very depths of our own collective memory and discover the wealth of psychological wisdom there.

So we are engaged in some collective projects now:

PROJECT #1: NO BORDERS – HUMANITY MIXES TOGETHER FULLY: The first project that is important in all of this is already well underway. The Internet has established itself as a borderless region, unbounded by national, religious and political obstacles. It has also sprung physical arms and legs, as evidenced in the swift overthrow of governments, politicians and other oppressors. VALUE: We advance beyond rigid religious systems that limit momentum and are violent to individuals, communities and other cultures. We overcome arrogance, ignorance and fundamentalism. There is more than one way to be a human. We are everything AND unique, all at once. In this way, we benefit from the cultural wisdom of others AND weave a powerful enough garment to absorb the heat of successive stages of an alchemical initiatory process. SAMPLE PROJECT: Can humans finalize the globalization of the planet WHILE retaining the unique, delicate and rich spiritual eco-systems of various regions? Can this unified world then identify and achieve collectively desired outcomes? Over and over again?


PROJECT #2: A GLOBAL MEDIUM & DELIVERY PLATFORM FOR ALL: The next project is also well underway, in the form of social networks and the myriad devices that social content populates. EXAMPLE: The World Wide Mind and THE Conversation Prism are perfect examples of how this rainbow wheel of social properties is animated by and animates human action. VALUE: Streamlining data analysis and action platforms facilitates achievement of the sample project above, namely collective action BY THE GLOBAL COMMUNITY toward COLLECTIVELY IDENTIFIED GOALS.

PROJECT #3: SUBMARINES INTO THE INTERIOR OF THE COLLECTIVE PSYCHE: The third project is just beginning. Via sophisticated data-mining solutions like PeopleBrowsr, Radian6 and others, as well as a deep understanding of social and human psychology, organizations are plumbing the depth of the collective unconscious.

Carolyn Kaufman describes Jung’s concept: “The collective unconscious is like psychic DNA: it contains “inherited” psychic material that links us not only to other humans in the present but also to our ancestors from the past. According to Jung’s theory, though each of us appears to function independently, in actuality we’re all tapped into the same global mind.”

Nikos Kazantzakis identifies the importance and value of being aware of the collective unconscious, “Myriad invisible hands hold your hands and direct them. When you rise in anger, a great-grandfather froths at your mouth; when you make love, an ancestral caveman growls with lust; when you sleep, tombs open in your memory till your skull brims with ghosts.”

VALUE: The goal of launching missions into the collective unconscious is that we discover what we have forgotten and link this to what we have invented IN ORDER TO reach what we desire.

PLUMBING THE COLLECTIVE UNCONSCIOUS FOR WISDOM: Again, humanity is collectively facing Hillman’s dilemma in The Soul’s Code, where he says, “I can no longer be sure whether the psyche is in me or whether I’m in the psyche…” Immersive mediums of expression and relationship like social networks clue us into deeper mysteries that CAN BE PLUMBED now and then turned into vehicles for going even deeper into our collective unconscious in search of wisdom, forgotten truth and stories. These in turn feed our evolution like nothing else can. In the old tribes, a teenage boy would undergo a ritual that threatened his life. Upon passing through, he had earned the right to sit around the fire with the men, to hunt with them and to enjoy the pleasures of women and family.

Our planet is undergoing such an initiation now, passing from fear and oppression INTO an era typified by simple technologies that resolve timeless human problems. The storyteller Michael Meade has said, “As nature rattles and culture unravels, mythic imagination tries to return to the world, for endings and beginnings are particularly mythic…myth makes meaning and helps a person find the meaningful path through life.”

Again, we will not fly to other galaxies until we plumb the very depths of our own collective memory and discover the wealth of psychological wisdom there. Do you have a different historical timeline that you like? “To keep the future open to all potentials, alternatives and dissenting possibilities, it is necessary to envisage alternative futures from different civilisational and cultural perspectives.” (Sardar) It may be the only way to get free of the “fate” and “karma” that previous generations are so deeply in love with. We do not need to have an apocalypse just because such a weight of humanity yearned for it…there are other optional endings. Cultivating a Choose Your Own Adventure approach is vital to survival at this point.