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Marc Prensky, Leadership Speaker

Marc Prensky

    • Integrating Technology, Education, and the Workplace; Founder & CEO, Games2train
Full Bio
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Marc Prensky Future-cation Video

Marc Prensky Future-cation Video

Marc Prensky - Plan B: Education to Better the World

Marc Prensky - Plan B: Education to Better the World

Marc Prensky Speaker Biography

A world-renowned thought leader, visionary, and generator of new ideas, Marc Prensky offers open-minded executive and leaders—on every continent—new and better ways to move into the future. Marc’s core skill is “re-framing,” i.e., getting people to see things in new ways. Marc helps audiences think, feel, and act differently regarding their future work and lives. People who hear him ALWAYS leave with new thoughts and perspectives.

Marc holds graduate degrees from Harvard and Yale Universities. He earned his MBA from the Harvard Business School with distinction, and spent 6 years at the famed Boston Consulting Group.

Marc is known throughout the world for coining the terms “digital native” and “digital immigrant” both now in the Oxford English Dictionary. Marc has given keynotes in almost 50 countries on 6 continents, helping people all over the world re-frame their thinking. Marc’s keynotes are, fast-paced, enjoyable and engaging, and are tailored for each audience. His presentation style is energetic, informal, and direct. Marc is well-known for continually offering new, high-quality ideas and thinking to conference audiences.

Marc’s goal is to make people think, feel, and act differently regarding our fast-arriving future world. Marc offers audiences — based on his keen, unique observations — new and better alternatives for succeeding in the fast-changing 21st century world. In Marc’s talks, 10 books, and over 200 essays, he offers the world what many have called “a breath of fresh air.”

Audiences leave Marc’s talks “buzzing” — with whole new ways of seeing the world, and a plethora of new ideas to implement. Those who hear Marc speak leave inspired, grateful for new perspectives, and generally deep in thought. They take away new, positive ways of seeing their work, lives and children, and many new ideas to implement.

Marc’ has published 10 books. His 2015 book, EDUCATION TO BETTER THEIR WORLD: Unleashing the Power of 21st century Kids’ won a gold prize. Marc’s latest book, EMPOWERED!: Re-framing ‘Growing Up’ for a New Age (2022) has been called “transformative,” “insightful,” and a “must-read.”

Marc believes ALL of today’s people have far more to contribute to the world than ever—if we bring out what is inside each of them. He shows new ways to unleash the capabilities and power of all our world’s people in their new, digital age—including new frames for technology, new alternatives to our current education, new ways of parenting, and new ways to help our young people find meaningful work in a 21st-century world.

Marc loves ideas, and is happy to debate anyone, particularly those whose views are “mainstream.”. He has debated author Mark Bauerlein (The Dumbest Generation) on tour, and has done one-on-one, on-stage debates around the world.

Marc will add energy to any onstage panel. He has appeared on high-level conference panels around the world. Marc is a former Broadway actor and musician (lute, classical and flamenco guitar), whose ideas are taught today in universities around the world. He has been a teacher at all levels, from elementary to university. He was an early pioneer in the movement to use games for social change, creating the first video games-based training for financial traders, and later starting a successful company, which he ran for over a decade.

Marc speaks on a variety of topics related to young people and generational change. They include: “Changing Beliefs and Attitudes in a Tech-filled, AI world,” “An Update on Digital Natives and Immigrants,” “Beyond Education to Empowerment,” “From Jobs to Adding Unique Value,” “From ‘Tool-Users’ To ‘Symbiotic Empowered Hybrids’,” “From ‘The Final Pre-Internet Generation’ to the Connected Humans of The Future,” “Empowerment Hubs in Companies and Organizations,” and “EMPOTECH—a New Technology Category.”

From “Jobs” to “Projects”; From Employer-focused to Employee focused

We all know work is changing. But few have the perspective and re-framing that Marc Prensky brings. In this far-seeing keynote Marc helps audiences see the NEW AGE OF EMPOWERMENT THAT IS ARRIVING, and its far-reaching implications for human work.

Anything that two people can do equally well will soon be replaced by a machine, as Artificial Intelligence and Automation penetrate further into our workplaces. BUT HAVE NO FEAR, Prensky says, BECAUSE WE WILL NEVER RUN OUT OF: —PEOPLE WITH DREAMS, —PROBLEMS TO FIX, and —PEOPLE WHO NEED HELP. Nor will we will run out of people who want to do those things. Those are the future of human work.

The way we will do these things better, says Prensky, is through SYMBIOSIS WITH TECHNOLOGY. Our key 21st century challenge, in order o solve all our pressing problems—like climate change— is to BECOME SYMBIOTIC with our new technologies as rapidly as possible. This goes for people of all ages—and the young are starting faster.

In our New Age of Empowerment, individuals will FINALLY HAVE THE MEANS TO CONTROL THEIR WORLD, starting at early ages. They will need to understand not just how to take control of their world, but how to improve it.

Finally, work will begin to be seen not as “jobs” that people get and hold, as they do today, but as “projects” that teams of people accomplish. Says one Fortune 500 executive: “We don’t do job descriptions any more, we only do project descriptions.” More and more firms and—entire fields—are now moving to this “project”—rather than job—orientation.

This means that an individual now requires a specialty that can enhance many teams,. They need to be continually increasing their skill at that specialty, so they can move fluidly between projects at different organizations (rather than climbing a hierarchical ladder of job promotions in any single one.) Everyone who now works in—or is considering— a so-called “permanent” job needs to understand this, and prepare for this new version of “work.”

In this keynote, Prensky shows us why it’s important to empower ALL our people, and how to do it quickly.

Takeaways include:

Why and how work will be changing (and is already)
What the new models of work mean for you and your children,
Why empowering people is key we to the future of work, and
How to be successful In the new environment.

From “People with Tools” to SYMBIOTIC EMPOWERED HUMANS

Many believe that as technology develops, we remain “the same people”—just with more powerful tools. In this controversial keynote Prensky re-frames this thinking to seeing humans as becoming “symbiotic empowered hybrids” with all the powerful new technologies we have created.

Marc believes technologies have effectively given humans new, helpful body parts—much like our having grown a new, useful tail—and we must learn to use these new body parts wisely and well.

This highly re-framing keynote explores the idea of symbiosis—first proposed in the 1970s— and how 21st century humans are becoming SYMBIOTIC HUMAN HYBRIDS.

The “new symbiosis” with technology IS NOT “addiction,” says Prensky. Rather it is the process of getting to know what we can do that is positive with our new capabilities. Figuring this out, says Prensky, is probably our most pressing 21st century task as humans—because it will help us solve all our other problems.

Takeaways include:

• Why we require a better way to look at humans and technology
• What being a “symbiotic empowered hybrid” means
• Why that is positive for all of us

Moving From TWO Worlds to THREE Worlds, and the BELIEFS DIVIDE

People often think there is only one world—the one they physically work and exist in, ignoring the ‘world of imagination’ in each of our heads. Yet that”imagination world” is from where all creativity springs. In fact, says Prensky, what we mean by ‘being creative’ is bringing the world of your imagination into the real world—particularly in positive ways. Clearly some do this more than others.

Up until now, people could build what was in their imaginations only in the real world. This is often very hard, so most people give up, and keep their imaginations to themselves. (It is those that persist whom we call “highly creative people” and “artists.)”

But things have changed dramatically in our times. Today, we have “The Cloud” —a brand-new world in which to instantiate imagination. It is a already a huge and growing world, with many dimensions. It is growing exponentially—far faster than the “real-world,” and offers huge opportunities. It is, says Prensky a new frontier of opportunities to be creative. Already here today., The Cloud is where the most immediate new opportunities for creativity lie.

The ‘Metaverse” —currently so highly-hyped— refers to the visual dimension of the Cloud. It is the part that, through a headset or special glasses, looks and feels like a real world. The Metaverse, says Prensky, is still in its earliest stages—it fully exists only in the imaginations of writers, people like Mark Zuckerberg, and in some early attempts, like “Second Life” and virtual game worlds. It is still in the very early stages of being built and not yet at the point where many would choose to live, work, or pour their imaginations into it. The Metaverse is only a small part of the already quite large and rapidly advancing “Cloud.”

Creativity is also strongly linked to BELIEFS, says Prensky. Today, we see beliefs around the world changing radically and rapidly,between generations, and a HUGE BELIEFS DIVIDE starting to form., which is about to have a huge impact on humanity OUR BELIEFS, says Prensky —embedded deep within our minds—DETERMINE ALL OUR ACTIONS. Prensky shows how Beliefs are changing generationally —including about creativity.

The most important new 21st century belief, says Prensky, is “I can.” In this broad and highly-reframing keynote, Prensky shows us why it is now time to re-examine and go beyond our 20th century beliefs, arguing that such beliefs hold us back on our journey to the world of the future. Prensky shows not only WHY the “belief re-framing” is key, but how to do it. Prensky highlights the new creative opportunities of today—which are enormous—and opens the audience’s’ eyes to what is coming far faster than most think.

Takeaways include:
How to be creative in the 21st century
What’s currently happening in “The Cloud” and what “The Cloud” means for your business
What to expect from the Metaverse—and when.
20th versus 21st century beliefs
Why new beliefs are key to success in the 21st century.

From a “must” to an “I wouldn’t want to NOT have”

Most of us think we are both trusting and trustworthy, and few are against diversity. But the reality is that most of our workplaces are less diverse than many would like, and sorely lacking in trust. In this unusual and re-framing keynote, Prensky asks: “Can trust and diversity be increased in our workplaqces? How can we do it?”

Marc helps audiences see diversity and trust in new ways. “What makes us unique,” he says, “are the individual projects we each choose to do and be part of.” Marc shows us that diversity and trust become not only easier, but desirable and necessary.when we are each working on things we actually care deeply about,

In this refreshing keynote, Marc Prensky brings his re-framing lenses to this issue, helping us see how trusting each other leads to far greater outcomes and satisfaction. He helps audiences understand how to view the issue , of diversity and of “trust” through new, and very different lenses.

“If a team had members of every race, religion, gender and nationality, and yet they all thought similarly about the problem at hand—how much diversity would there be?” Marc asks. Regarding trust, he asks “What happens if someone lets you down?”

Takeaways include
How to create situations where people NEED and DEMAND diversity and trust
How to promote diversity of THINKING—and use that to our advantage
How to measure diversity of thought?
How to build higher performance through trust, diversity of thinking, and projects
How to increase trust in the workplace

From old beliefs to NEW 21st Century BELIEFS

Today we are far beyond the terms “digital natives” and “digital immigrants” that Marc Prensky coined two decades ago. We are now in a time of massive generational change in attitudes and beliefs.

Attitudes and beliefs are changing radically with regard to a huge number of areas, says Prensky, including education technology, privacy, property, personal relationships, security, sexuality, power, kids, violence, god, justice, money, love, government, creativity, and even time and space.

Today we are in the midst of a major transition from the beliefs and attitudes of the world’s “Last Pre-Internet Generation,” raised entirely in the 20th century, and the “First Internet Generation,” raised entirely in the 21st. The most important new generational belief, says Prensky is “I CAN.” The consequences, says Prensky, are profound.

Takeaways include:
How beliefs differ between generations.
What this implies for adults and for young people”
What are the best actions for us to take?

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