The Need for a Mashup Mind Set

March 24, 2014
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Written by Jason Francis

One of the reoccurring themes during SXSW was that of multitasking. Very few people can now define what they do specifically in one single statement. Even in the 9:00am- 5:00pm work world positions are being combined to perform multiple roles at once. An average person, ages 25 – 45, will have over 10 different job titles in their lives. This way of life has become second nature to me but I wanted to hear about it from an outside perspective so I attended a panel titled Think, Act and Create Like a Mashup. Mashup refers to the combining of different elements to create a new more effective product, service or experience.

Within Felicia Pride’s full presentation there were a few points she shared that stood out to me as vital elements to incorporate in our professional operating process.

Immerse yourself in the other – The Mashup Mind Set relies heavily on dealing with things outside of what your main focus generally is or has been. It’s the need to step out of boxes and comfort zones to get familiar with the things you aren’t great at. This way of thinking leads to you becoming better-rounded in your work and as an individual.

Operate from a mission and not a title – Far too often we get caught up in titles. I’m an accountant so that’s what I do. Instead we can greatly improve on result by thinking more of the mission or goal we want to accomplish. Giving less concern to your title keeps you from restricting yourself by what you’re expected to do.

Travel across physical and digital spaces – This is actually a point I share with people often and was a key I shared in Austin during SXSW. Travel, be social. Don’t just be an avatar and a screen name stuck in one place. Professionally be present at events that relate to what you do. Attend panels, sessions or social mixers to allow your peers to put a true face to the online persona.  Even on a personal level a change of scenery helps to shake up perspective that can spawn new thoughts.

Embrace your inner lifelong student & use the world as your classroom – For many of us the blueprint we were brought up on was that we get an education as kids then after High school or College we stop and enter the “Real World,” there should never be a departure from the desire to learn. The Mashup mentality requires well rounded knowledge that applies to various areas of life. That can only be attended with a continuous push to learn new things. Foster this attitude for learning via online classes, tutorials, visiting museums, the options are limitless.

At the heart of this presentation was the need to be adaptable. There is no longer a singular path to success and to truly navigate the ever changing road you will travel requires you to be ready for any and everything. Below is the actual slide show from Ms. Pride’s SXSW presentation so you can see more of what she shared with her attendees.


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