Globally acclaimed keynote speaker, futures strategist, 5 times bestselling author, Singularity University and Duke CE faculty member, Associate Partner at the Copenhagen Institute for Future Studies, Chief of Tomorrow Board Member, and podcaster at The Expansive – John Sanei isn’t just transforming the way we think about the future, he’s empowering us with the courage we need to cultivate everlasting change.
Using a dynamic mix of human psychology, quantum science, business strategy and futurism, John creates talks, writes books, delivers masterclasses, and sits on boards to help guide future-forward leaders who are ready to lean into uncertainty, overcome doubt, and rise with courage, clarity, and power.
“I am resolutely dedicated to promoting optimism among humans regarding the future, which remains unknown and uncertain. To achieve this, I am working to deepen my understanding of neuroscience and seeking ways to alter the neural pathways in our brains to foster a positive and energetic outlook towards what lies ahead.”
In a recent conversation with the team of CXO Outlook Magazine, John Sanei speaks about his passion for technology, what makes his books a hit among the audience, future plans, and a lot more. Following are the excerpts from the interview.
According to you, what are the 3 things people can do to develop foresight from where they are?
Developing foresight is a personal endeavor, and it starts with cultivating wisdom and a serene, inquisitive mindset. By tapping into our innate curiosity, we can access a unique sixth sense and harness the power of imagination, as Einstein so rightly noted, imagination is more vital than knowledge as it allows us to envision the potential possibilities of the future.
Where did your interest in technology start? And what makes you so passionate about the tech world and what lies ahead?
My passion lies at the intersection of technology and humanity, where I strive to assist people in engaging with technology in a positive and inquisitive way. As an early adopter, I have a natural inclination to explore what’s next and how best to approach it. My goal is help foster an optimistic and curious attitude towards technology, rather than one of fear or apprehension. With a positive perspective, technology can become an ally in our personal and collective evolution as humans. By approaching technology with an optimistic mindset, we can harness its potential to enhance our lives and capabilities.
As a 5x bestselling author, what do you think makes your books click with thousands of readers across the world? Out of all your books, which one is closest to your heart?
I believe that my books have been successful because they bridge the gap between human psychology and futurism, two subjects that are not often explored together. I also use my personal experiences to illustrate the lessons I’ve learned, making them relatable to readers. At the core, my books are about taking personal responsibility for our own evolution and growth to prepare for the future.
You are the Faculty Member at Singularity University. Can you please tell us about your role and responsibilities in the global organization?
Singularity University was established to provide corporations and governments with a deeper understanding of the future, as it is an incredibly diverse and varied field. The University boasts a diverse faculty that covers a wide range of topics, from AI to DNA sequencing, 3D printing, and blockchain applications. My role as a speaker is to bring my expertise and research on the intersection of neuroscience and the future to the table.
Being a well-famed keynote speaker at various global events, how important do you think public speaking plays a vital role in embracing the audience and adapt to the new changes that shape the future?
When speaking to an audience, it’s crucial to create an immersive experience where they feel understood and supported. By highlighting how others have overcome similar challenges and providing practical tools, the audience can feel empowered to tackle their own obstacles. To make the experience engaging and memorable, it’s important to infuse it with humor, surprises, and unexpected elements, so that the audience leaves feeling energized and confident in their ability to navigate future challenges.
Please tell us about your role as Chief of Tomorrow at Team Tomorrow Advisory?
Boards and executive teams need a forward-thinking perspective to stay ahead of potential disruptions caused by new technologies or business models. I bring a wide understanding of various industries, as well as an understanding of the macroeconomic and technological landscape, combined with proficiency in data analysis and trend identification. This allows me to identify opportunities and mitigate risks for the company. My relentless focus on innovation and staying ahead of the competition positions me to lead the company towards long-term growth and success.
Where do you see yourself in the next five years?
In the next five years, I envision myself traveling even more extensively around the world and sharing my research and expertise with an increasing number of corporations and governments. I see myself as a global thought leader in my field and I look forward to sharing my knowledge and experience to help people and organizations thrive in the future.
Who is the one person you look upto and why?
Throughout my life, I have looked up to various individuals for different reasons. Sometimes it’s for their kindness, other times it’s for their focus and determination. But one person who has consistently inspired me is my mother. She single-handedly raised my brother and me, and her strength and resilience has had a profound impact on my life. She is a constant source of inspiration for me.
Which are the top 3 skills that every future-ready leader must possess?
“Strong opinions held loosely” is an ideal mindset for anyone, but particularly for leaders. It enables them to be adaptable and optimistic when leading their organizations, especially during challenging times. I’ve found that practicing mindfulness and meditation helps to achieve inner calm and unlearn old ideas, behaviors, and habits. Additionally, regular exercise is essential for physical and mental well-being, as it releases endorphins in the brain that promote clarity and optimism.
One piece of advice you would like to give to someone who is pursuing a career in technology.
Being passionate about your field is crucial, especially when it comes to technology. If you’re truly passionate, you will naturally keep researching and staying ahead of the game, which makes you an invaluable asset to yourself and any company or team you work with. It’s important to be passionate about what you do as it not only drives you to be better but also helps to bring out the best in others.