What’s Not Going to Change in 10 Years? (Jeff Bezos)

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Where change is the only constant (alien technology LLMs!), itโ€™s easy to get caught up in a cycle of chasing the next big thing.

However, Amazon’s former CEO, Jeff Bezos, offers a different perspective useful for navigating our careers, enhancing productivity, refining our mindset, and looking toward the future of business and technology:

Jeff Bezos: “โ€œI very frequently get the question: ‘What’s going to change in the next 10 years?’ And that is a very interesting question; it’s a very common one. I almost never get the question: ‘What’s not going to change in the next 10 years?’ And I submit to you that that second question is actually the more important of the two — because you can build a business strategy around the things that are stable in time.” source

Bezos famously emphasized the importance of focusing on what won’t change, suggesting that understanding these constants can be a key to long-term success.

Let’s explore ten areas that will likely remain unchanged in the next decade and how they impact these crucial aspects of our lives.

1. Human Needs and Behaviors

At the heart of all our endeavors, from career to personal development, lies a set of basic human needs as outlined by Maslow.

These needs โ€“ physiological, safety, love/belonging, esteem, and self-actualization โ€“ will continue to drive our actions and decisions.

Businesses in various sectors have thrived by strategically targeting different levels of Maslow’s hierarchy of needs:

  • ๐Ÿ” Physiological Needs: Fast-food chains like McDonald’s and grocery stores like Whole Foods satisfy basic physiological needs by providing essential food and nourishment.
  • ๐Ÿ›ก๏ธ Safety Needs: Companies like ADT Security Services fulfill safety needs by offering security systems that protect individuals and their properties, ensuring a sense of safety and security.
  • ๐Ÿ’ž Belonging and Love Needs: Social media platforms like Facebook and dating apps like Tinder cater to the need for belonging and love by helping people connect and build relationships.
  • ๐Ÿ† Esteem Needs: Luxury brands such as Rolex and Gucci appeal to esteem needs, providing products that symbolize status, success, and personal achievement.
  • ๐ŸŽ“ Cognitive Needs: Educational platforms like Finxter address cognitive needs by offering a wide range of learning materials and opportunities for intellectual growth.
  • ๐ŸŽจ Aesthetic Needs: Entertainment services like Spotify and Netflix cater to aesthetic needs by providing diverse, artistically pleasing content, enriching people’s lives through art and entertainment.

These needs have different intensity with increasing personal development:

2. Human Nature

Compassion, empathy, and connection are not just soft skills but crucial elements in building strong teams, effective leadership, and customer relations. These traits are timeless and will continue to be at the core of successful business strategies.

I recommend reading the classic “How to Win Friends and Influence People” by Dale Carnegie. Here’s the TLDR:

  1. Understand and Appreciate Others: Show genuine interest in other people and appreciate their perspectives and efforts. Remembering and using their names during conversations is a key technique.
  2. Be a Good Listener and Encourage Others to Talk: Encourage others to speak about themselves and listen actively. This builds rapport and trust.
  3. Avoid Criticism and Complaints: Criticism often leads to resentment. Carnegie suggests understanding others’ viewpoints and avoiding unnecessary criticism.
  4. Praise and Recognition: Sincerely praise others’ achievements and strengths. This encourages positive behavior and builds self-esteem.
  5. Win People to Your Way of Thinking: Respect others’ opinions, avoid arguments, and show empathy towards their ideas and desires. Persuasion over confrontation is more effective.
  6. Be a Leader: Inspire and motivate others rather than commanding them. Acknowledge mistakes, talk about your own errors before criticizing others, and make the other person happy about doing what you suggest.

These principles are not just techniques but a way of life, encouraging kindness, empathy, and genuine interest in others, which Carnegie argues are key to personal and professional success.

3. Ethical Considerations

Issues like ethical dilemmas, corporate social responsibility, and sustainability are not going away anytime soon. (The woke mind virus is alive and well!)

Businesses that prioritize these aspects and integrate them into their core values will not only stand the test of time but also attract a workforce and customer base that values these principles.

As Sam Altman said, โ€œThe stuff that people cared about 50,000 years ago is likely to be the stuff people care about 100 years from now.โ€

OpenAI CEO Sam Altman | AI for the Next Era

4. The Need for Digital Communication and Collaboration

No matter how much technology evolves, the need for clear and effective communication and collaboration remains. In the next decade, as remote work and digital teams become more prevalent, mastering these skills will be essential for productivity and career advancement.

๐Ÿ’ก Recommended: Will ChatGPT Kill Freelancing? No Theyโ€™re Allies Not Enemys, Says Upwork CEO

5. Man’s Search for Meaning

Peopleโ€™s quest for meaning in their work and personal lives is a constant. Businesses that provide a sense of purpose and align with their employees’ values will see increased engagement and productivity. This also applies to individuals who are more likely to find fulfillment in careers that resonate with their personal beliefs and passions.

That’s why there are 100 applicants for one position at Tesla where employees feel they make a difference!

6. Desire for Stability and Variety

Why We Do What We Do | TED Talks | Tony Robbins

Tony Robbins’ concept of the need for certainty and uncertainty/variety will continue to play a significant role in career choices and business strategies. Balancing the need for stable, reliable processes with the desire for innovation and change is key:

๐Ÿ‘‰ Example: As a prompt engineer, applying Tony Robbins’ concept means striking a balance between stable, reliable methods and the excitement of innovation.

On one hand, I rely on established guidelines, prompting tricks, and standards to build on the prompting wisdom of others.

On the other hand, I embrace the unpredictability of exploring new styles, prompts, applications, and model variations or fine-tunings to keep my work fresh – as I’m aware that nobody has retrieved all possibilities of LLMs and alien tech.

7. The Timeless Need for Personal Growth and Contribution

Personal and professional development will remain a priority. Individuals who invest in continuous learning and businesses that support employee growth will thrive. Similarly, the desire to contribute positively to society and the workplace will stay relevant, influencing career choices and business models:

Learn high-income skills, develop your character, read more books, master your productivity, build better habits, fix your mental health, master your time and energy management, fix your spending habits, build a healthy and attractive body, upgrade your social skills, become good at action-taking, and read more fuc*ing books.

When you spend the next 5 to 10 years becoming a high-value individual, youโ€™ll become wealthy. This is the only step youโ€™ll have to do (source).

8. The Constant Need for Adaptation in Tech

While technology itself is ever-changing, the need to adapt and stay abreast of technological advancements is a constant. In the next decade, being tech-savvy and adaptable will be critical for career progression and business success.

Finxter has your back in this regard, just keep reading our daily tech and AI newsletter and you’ll stay on the right side of change. If you’re not already on the newsletter, you can do so by downloading a Python cheat sheet here: ๐Ÿ‘‡๐Ÿ‘‡๐Ÿ‘‡

9. The Ongoing Demand for Personalized Experiences

In business and technology, the trend toward personalization and customized experiences will persist. Understanding and anticipating customer needs will remain a key factor in business success, and technology will play a significant role in facilitating this.

10. Trust and Integrity Are Vital

Trust and integrity in business practices, products, and services will continue to be a cornerstone of success. Companies that maintain transparency and ethical standards will build stronger customer relationships and a more loyal workforce.

Your integrity might be your most important asset in the future, you can be sure about that. So, protect it at all costs!

These ten constants can provide a solid foundation for decision-making in career, productivity, mindset, business, and technology. By focusing on these enduring aspects, we can build strategies that are not only effective today but will remain relevant and impactful in the years to come. In the spirit of Jeff Bezos’ philosophy, paying attention to what doesn’t change can be the key to enduring success in a rapidly evolving world.

To summarize:

Ten Commandments – How to Stay on the Right Side of Change

Before I’ll dive into each of them, let’s recap the “10 Things That Won’t Change in the Next Decade” as commandments:

  1. Thou Shalt Respect Basic Human Needs: Always cater to the fundamental physiological, safety, love, esteem, and self-actualization needs of individuals.
  2. Thou Shalt Honor Human Nature: Uphold and value human traits like compassion, empathy, and the need for connection in all your endeavors.
  3. Thou Shalt Acknowledge Social and Ethical Responsibilities: Remain conscious of social issues and ethical challenges, integrating responsibility into your actions.
  4. Thou Shalt Prioritize Communication and Collaboration: Always value clear communication and collaboration as key pillars of success.
  5. Thou Shalt Seek Meaning and Purpose: Strive to find and provide meaning and purpose in both professional and personal realms.
  6. Thou Shalt Balance Stability with Innovation: Maintain a balance between the need for certainty and the desire for variety and change.
  7. Thou Shalt Promote Growth and Contribution: Encourage personal growth and the desire to contribute positively to society and one’s surroundings.
  8. Thou Shalt Embrace Technological Adaptation: Continuously adapt to and integrate technological advancements in your work and life.
  9. Thou Shalt Value Personalization: Recognize and meet the individual needs and preferences of others, particularly in business and service.
  10. Thou Shalt Build Trust and Integrity: Uphold trust and integrity in all your interactions and transactions, building lasting relationships based on these principles.

Finally, let’s recap the most important piece of knowledge in this article, in my opinion:

Sam Altman, founder OpenAI: โ€œThe stuff that people cared about 50,000 years ago is likely to be the stuff people care about 100 years from now.โ€