‘Business Report’ Publisher: Louisiana again faces the future

    Rolfe McCollister St. George

    “We just need to first stop pretending disruption, on so many fronts, isn’t already happening. Instead, we have to start taking action.”

    —Author, digital analyst and futurist Brian Solis.

    Brian Solis travels the globe and sees the evidence of disruption daily—and what lies ahead. He recently shared some comments in his blog that reminded Business Report Publisher Rolfe McCollister of a story from Louisiana’s 1987 governor’s race.

    Solis, writing about disruption, said, “It’s a touchy subject. It’s uncomfortable. It’s scary. It’s also inevitable. The sooner you embrace disruption, the sooner you become a disruptor rather than disrupted. Disruption happens to us or because of us.”

    The choice, says Solis, is ours to make. no one’s fault. The world has changed.
    Reading Solis’ thoughts, McCollister, as he writes in his latest column, remembered a story involving former Gov. Buddy Roemer when he was running for office in 1987. He had done a TV spot where he spoke of the world getting smaller and our competition being global. Baton Rouge wasn’t competing with Bossier, but with Beijing.

    But when Roemer’s consultant tested this commercial to a focus group in north Louisiana they didn’t like it. It seemed to frighten them because they felt their kids weren’t prepared and couldn’t compete in that world—so they did not want to hear about it in a TV spot.

    Their position was to ignore the disruption of 1987 and hope that it would go away, McCollister says. It didn’t.

    Fast forward 30 years and many of those “kids” are your fellow adult citizens. Now they—along with you, your kids and grandkids—are faced with even greater and faster disruption on the world stage. How will you respond? Ignore it … again?

    Also in his column, McCollister writes that calculating the impact of Baton Rouge companies receiving ITEP goes beyond simple job creation numbers. Spotlighting several ExxonMobil employees who have made significant contributions to the community through works done outside the gates of the north Baton Rouge facility, McCollister argues it’s important that we look beyond the “trees” of jobs created or taxes paid and focus on the entire “forest” of community impact.

    Read McCollister’s full column. Send comments to editor@businessreport.com


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