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We have entered a digital, networked age. Future-proof your business with John Sanei's What's Your Moonshot?

We live in a disrupted world. A world on the brink of great transformation and exponential growth – in which:

- Wearable and embedded devices are no longer just fantasies in sci-fi movies; they have arrived;
- Drone delivery systems are not an April Fool’s joke;
- Off-grid electricity is becoming widely accessible;
- The “gig economy” is taking off;
- Hyper-convenient, hyper-personalised services are changing the way the world does business;
- Tech is disrupting every industry, be it travel, taxis, media, books… ;
- And this disruption is happening everywhere, be it in First World cities or among less affluent Third World markets. As examples of the first, think of Uber, Airbnb, Facebook and drone deliveries.

As of today, more than 3.5-billion people are connected to the internet; by 2023 that number will be around 7-billion.

The end of the monopoly of oil and coal power is nearing as renewable energy emerges.

Transport is being revolutionised with the arrival of driverless cars and autonomous drones.

Massive, transformative “moonshot” ideas are shaping our future.
 
 
People no longer want to pay for content, but they will pay to be emotionally invested in a product if it prioritises personalisation, convenience, trust and brand recognition – never before has it been as important to understand your customers’ needs. And now you must understand your employees’ needs, too.

People no longer want to commute to work, but they will work harder and smarter if you give them the right tools and opportunities.

In What’s Your Moonshot? trend and innovation strategist John Sanei invites you to prepare for this brave new world by understanding the digital, networked age we have entered and learning how to future-proof your business.

The first step is to get your internal strategy right: are you seeing yourself as a victim of the future, or an architect of it? The second step is to decipher which business strategies, trends and innovations are relevant to you as you create your moonshot ideas.

Strap in and get ready to become the new type of “billionaire”: one who possesses the courage to think bigger, aim higher and make a positive impact on billions of people.

John Sanei is a trend specialist, innovation strategist and public speaker, with a client list that includes De Beers, Microsoft, Dell and Standard Bank. He lives in Cape Town, but workcations regularly around the world – and puts his apartment on Airbnb when he does.

Book details

What's Your Moonshot? Interview with author John Sanei

moonshot cover                   John Sanei 2017

 

 

John Sanei is a trend specialist, entrepreneur, business innovation strategist and now author who travels the world speaking to some of the globe’s most influential businesses about how they can future-proof their businesses. Here, he talks to us about his debut book What’s Your Moonshot?

Tell us about What’s Your Moonshot?

In 1961, JFK gave a speech stating that he believed the United States would put a man on the moon by the end of the decade. At the time the technology to do so didn’t exist but his daring statement created a huge amount of energy and in eight short years the country had achieved one of humankind’s greatest feats. Decades later, the likes of Steve Jobs and Elon Musk have been able to create the same sort of “moonshots” with huge amounts of money and brainpower. The book is based on the fact that we are moving into a world where we will have access to 7 billion people at the click of a button in the next 5-10 years. The world will have free fast Wi-Fi, together with almost free energy sources and almost free transportation. With this in mind, we all now have the ability to do what organisations and governments used to do in previous decades: create “moonshots”
The book is about how we view the future. Are we victims or architects of it? It also asks how we categorise and contextualise trends in order to help us innovate; how to create businesses that have got global footprints and are creating solutions for humanity’s future.

Why did you want to write a book?
I wrote it for three reasons. The first was a brain dump – a Feng shui principal of getting rid of the old to bring in the new. It’s what I practise at home in my physical space but also in my mental space in order to bring in new information. I wanted to download the information that was sitting in my head.
The second reason’s based on a quote from Yogi Bhajan, the man who brought Kundilini Yoga from the East to the West: “If you want to learn something, read about it. If you want to understand something, write about it. If you want to master something, teach it.” I feel I had to write about internal dialogue and external strategy in this book in order to really understand them, and I am now mastering them in my consultation and speaking engagements.
Finally, I really wanted to give people a toolset and a step-by-step programme in order to create moonshots and create positive businesses that the globe really needs.

In What’s Your Moonshot? you talk about being Forever Profitable – in a nutshell, what does that mean?

Forever Profitable is the methodology I use to guide organisations into the future. It’s quite self-explanatory; by following the methodology you’re able to maintain profitability forever. It’s a big statement but when you understand the methodology you realise that it’s a very clear step-by-step process involving
The future of your industry
The future of your consumer
The future of your employee and
The future of technology
Of course there’s more to it than this – you’ll have to read the book!

 

 

John shares What's Your Moonshot? with Richard Branson in Cape Town.

John shares What’s Your Moonshot? with Richard Branson in Cape Town.

 

Describe your creative writing process.
I built out the keynote presentation about two years ago and have given keynote speeches since.  Then my copywriter, wordsmith and ghost writer, Kirsten Molyneaux, came to one of them with the intention of helping me write the book. She drew up a structure and from there we met and did strategy sessions on what each chapter could be about and what the process of the book should follow in order to bring about moonshot thinking.
It was a long process, with lots of back and forth between Kirsten and me, and my editor Tim (Richman). There was a lot of chiselling to capture it all concisely and present it all in an easy-to-understand way – but I didn’t actually write anything. I really voice-noted everything because I think better when I’m talking than when I’m writing. I also know my strengths and I think that’s important: most people find it quite daunting to write a book because they think they have to sit down and write. With modern technology, we have so many different options available to us  I used my strengths in speaking and I found someone who could match my skills in talking with writing – Kirsten helped me bring it to life.

What was your most challenging hurdle in publishing this book?
The type of personality I am, it’s always about the details afterwards. It’s the re-writing, the re-reading the re-writing again – that editing part of it was really challenging to me because once I’ve got it out of my head I don’t really want to see it again. I’m grateful to Tim and Kirsten for holding my hand through that editing process.

Who is your author hero?
Seth Godin. His book The Purple Cow changed my whole life. And I loved the way he brings ‘Aha’ moments into small, simple stories.

What are you currently reading?
I’m not actually reading anything. I’m listening to two books: Sapiens by Yuval Noah Harari and The Code of the Extraordinary Mind by Vishen Lakhiani.

What one thing would you like your reader to come away with having finished What’s Your Moonshot?
A reality check. A check on the potentiality of them as a human being; a potentiality of dreaming bigger and bringing about these global solutions to humanity’s problems based on my methodologies. I want people to just think bigger…for them to ask the question, what is my moonshot?

Who inspires you?
Anyone who is living his or her highest excitement and living a purposeful, driven life inspires me. Whether they are designers of clothes, writers of books or running a multi-billion dollar business – they all inspire me.
Specifically, Peter Diamandis is one of the most advanced human beings I know of. He is the original ‘moonshoter’ and he’s inspired me to write this book and to help me think in a very specific way.

What’s your next book?
I have a couple bubbling in my head but nothing has been formalised yet. I’ll get there. Now that I understand the process of publishing and I understand what it takes, I’ve got a better and clearer understanding of how I can actually get them out of my head. I’m heading to the States soon so I’m sure that will lend some inspiration.

Brian Kantor's Get South Africa Growing will add to the layman's understanding of the economy


South Africans have been poorly served by the economic choices their governments have made.

The consequences of these choices are everywhere to be seen but most importantly in unemployment and poverty.

In this book Brian Kantor advances spirited economic arguments for freer markets and less government intervention and regulation of the South African economy; the book will add significantly to a layman’s understanding of how our economy works.

It offers a succinct review of all the key drivers that determine a modern economy’s performance as well as the key institutions of a modern economy.

The book presents an insightful review of the challenges facing the South African economy and its policy makers.

Kantor’s sound economic insights, enriched by his familiarity with current affairs and developments in the local political milieu and financial markets, make his book a key and important contribution to the continuing debate which rages around our failing economy – indeed it presents solutions which policy makers ignore at their (and our) peril.
 
 
 
 
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Harold the ceramicist and the Melon’s gallstone - Sue de Groot on the (many) comical translations of Harry Potter

Everyone loves JK Rowling, except perhaps those who cursed her when translating Harry Potter

By Sue de Groot

SPARE a thought for those who translate English texts. Mastering English is a Sisyphean task for those who speak it from birth; learning it as a second language is, to put it mildly, a bastard. Now imagine what it must be like to transform the infinitely complex twists and turns of an idiomatic, idiosyncratic English sentence into something that makes sense in another language.

As if that weren’t difficult enough, imagine trying to translate words that do not exist in any dictionary, English or otherwise. You might think everyone in the world worships and adores JK Rowling, but I suspect those who had to translate the Harry Potter books occasionally cursed her.

How do you translate quidditch, horcruxes, wrackspurt and crumple-horned snorkacks into other-language words of similar bounce and gravitas? And what about those quibbilicious character names? These are the things that kept translators awake at night.

One solution would have been to leave Rowling’s words alone, but translators are a brave bunch and besides, English wordplay only works if you understand English. To be effective in other languages, names and places would have to be rewritten, and some of the interpretations of Potterverse are almost as entertaining as the books themselves.

Take the “pensieve”, a bowl containing someone’s memories. Rowling’s word combines the properties of a colander and deep thought. The Germans turned it into the lovely Denkarium, a made-up word that married thinking with an aquarium. The Norwegians, if you ask me, fell a little short of the mark. They call it a tanketank, literally a “thought-tank”, which sounds more like a gathering of business executives than a magical device.

Chinese translations are inscrutable unless one can read Chinese characters, but if you ever get a chance to watch the dubbed Harry Potter films with English subtitles, do treat yourself. For some reason the Chinese word for “Muggle” (a non-magical person) translates back into English as “melon”.

As any Pottermaniac knows, Muggles are spread thickly throughout the seven books. Turning them into Melons results in a giant fruit basket. To pick just a few random sentences: “Melons have garden gnomes too, you know”; “You should take Melon studies next year”; “I was merely reading the Melon magazines”; “Melon women wear them, Archie; not the men”; “Even Melons like yourself should be celebrating”; “My parents are Melons, mate”; “How come the Melons don’t hear the bus?” And so on.

As for the character names, Harry, Ron and Hermione have escaped intact, as has Voldemort, but the key plot point involving an anagram presented a huge translation challenge. He-who-should-not-really-be-named made up his own creepy label by jumbling up the letters of his given Melon name, Tom Marvolo Riddle — the anagram is “I am Lord Voldemort”. The French got around this by changing Voldemort’s original name to Tom Elvis Jedusor, which yielded the anagram “Je suis Voldemort”. But how can one take a supervillain called Elvis seriously?

The French have also had fun with the names of animals. Hermione’s cat Crookshanks is known as Pattenrond in France. Ron’s rat Scabbers is Croûtard, and Dumbledore’s phoenix Fawkes has become Fumseck — which sounds like a thumbsuck to me.

The Mentalfloss website has investigated foreign names for the Hogwarts houses. In Spanish, Swedish, German, Polish, and Hebrew they remain Gryffindor, Hufflepuff, Ravenclaw and Slytherin, but in other countries they have been reinterpreted in some mystifying ways. The French, for instance, changed Hufflepuff to Poufsouffle, which sounds like a cross between something you eat for breakfast and something you rest your feet on. They changed Slytherin to Serpentard — Harry’s Gryffindor mates would no doubt have howled with joy at the implied insult.

Hufflepuff seems to have given translators the most trouble. In Brazilian Portuguese it is Lufa-lufa, like something one might use in the shower. In Italian it is Tassorosso (“red badger” for the house’s mascot) and in Welsh it is Wfftiwff, which apparently is not an acronym. In Czechoslovakia they settled for Mrzimor.
There’s much more to this than Mrzimor and Melons. I recommend this rabbit hole whenever you need a mood lift.

*This is an extended version of the Pedant Class column published in Sunday Times Lifestyle Magazine on March 26 2017

Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone

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Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets

 
 
 
 

Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban

 
 
 
 

Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire

 
 
 
 

Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix

 
 
 
 

Harry Potter And The Half-Blood Prince

 
 
 
 

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows

Book launch: Business Writing for South Africans by Bettie Viljoen-Smook et al

Business Writing for South Africans Corporate editor and independent publisher Gary Cummiskey will be in conversation with the authors to discuss the secrets of effective business communication…

Event Details

  • Date: Thursday, 16 March 2017
  • Time: 6:00 PM for 6:30 PM
  • Venue: Love Books, The Bamboo Lifestyle Centre, 53 Rustenburg Road, Melville, Johannesburg
  • Guest Speaker: Gary Cummiskey
  • RSVP: Kate Rogan, Love Books, kate@lovebook.co.za, 011 726 7408, 011 726 7408
    www.lovebooks.co.za/

Book Details

By popular demand: The Disruptors Extended Ebook Edition by Kerryn Krige and Gus Silber out now

The DisruptorsThe Gordon Institute of Business Science (GIBS) has announced the official release of The Disruptors Extended Ebook Edition: Social Entrepreneurs Reinventing Business and Society by Kerryn Krige and Gus Silber.

The Disruptors Extended Ebook Edition is a follow up to the The Disruptors, which was released in March 2016.

Both editions are published by GIBS and Bookstorm, with support from the National Treasury and the government of Flanders, and are authored by Kerryn Krige, head of the GIBS Network for Social Entrepreneurship (GIBS NSE), and award-winning journalist Gus Silber.

“Social entrepreneurship makes sense,” Krige says. “We know that business cannot focus on generating profit alone if it wants to thrive, and our social entrepreneurs show the enormous value of setting up hybrid businesses that generate both social and economic value.”

From GIBS:

The Disruptors Extended Ebook Edition: Social Entrepreneurs Reinventing Business and Society tells the stories of South Africa’s social entrepreneurs, such as Vuyani Dance Theatre’s revolution of township dance and Stacey Brewer and Ryan Harrison’s Spark Schools which are transforming the landscape of affordable, quality education.

The first edition of The Disruptors has already been reprinted in SA and the US after exceeding sales. This extended edition, available as an ebook for Kindle and Kobo, profiles four social entrepreneurs: Trevor Mulaudzi, whose work in sanitation has earned him the nickname the Doctor Shit, Tsonga Shoes’s Peter Maree, early childhood development visionary Jane Evans, and Guy Stubbs whose naked honey, on sale in Dis-Chem, is transforming the lives of communities in Mpumalanga.

Founder and chair of the Women’s Development Bank Trust Zanele Mbeki says in the book’s foreword, “GIBS with its academic and executive programmes in social entrepreneurship and its networks, is the potential catalyst that we need in South Africa to bring big business, government and civil society together.”

The Disruptors Extended Ebook Edition: Social Entrepreneurs Reinventing Business and Society is written in an engaging manner that defies the boundaries of traditional business books. Krige and Silber storify the turning point that led to the creation of the social enterprises and balance this with a compelling academic take that positions the entrepreneur on a social enterprise spectrum.

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