working-through-time mental patterns


pyramid to dna

Economic development work approach

Moving brains toward tomorrowS


This is a public service website for helping people
navigate a profoundly changing world

It provides a big-picture thinking landscape for
working through time

cork board radar medium

The site primarily uses Peter Drucker’s top of the food-chain work.
It’s a “prototype.”

We can only work on, with and toward the “things”
on our active “mental radar.”

Imagine the outcome for someone in 1930, 1950, 1970, 1990 or 2005
confidently and steadfastly acting on the assumption that
tomorrows were going to be like yesterdays — an extension of the past.
What would be the appropriate assumptions today?

AS WE ADVANCE deeper into the knowledge economy” — Drucker books

movies in time movies in time

A starting foundation

A world moving toward unimagined futureS


The site’s origins come from
several years of corporate restructuring work — everybody
was very busy working on things without a future — and
subsequent work on the changing world and its implications.

Technology Is Wiping Out Companies Faster than Ever

“High tech is living in the nineteenth century,
the pre-management world.

They believe that people pay for technology.
They have a romance with technology.

But people don’t pay for technology:
they pay for what
they get out of technology.”
The Frontiers of Management




How many Americans are purposefully working on the
challenges of navigating toward different tomorrows
in a changing and unpredictable world — based on
the assumption that tomorrows are not
going to be an extension of today
(which is largely yesterday)?

How can anyone effectively work amidst the confusion
and misinformation that seems to predominate discussions
and thinking on entrepreneurship, innovation, marketing,
productivity, management, and leadership?

It’s in the news

“To know something,
to really understand something important,
one must look at it from sixteen different angles.

People are perceptually slow,
and there is no shortcut to understanding;
it takes a great deal of time.” PFD read more

cork board radar

Connecting the dots




“We live in a period of PROFOUND TRANSITION
and the changes
are more radical perhaps
than even those that ushered in
the “Second Industrial Revolution”
of the middle of the 19th century,

or the structural changes triggered by
the Great Depression
and the Second World War. …

For in many cases … the new realities and their demands
require a REVERSAL of policies
that have worked well for the last century
and, even more, a change in the MINDSET of
organizations as well as of individuals.” — Peter Drucker

Examples: News ::: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6

Economic stagnation and severe social tension from
failure to raise knowledge and service worker productivity

… “But if existing institutions cannot learn to innovate,
the social consequences will be
almost unbearably severe”. — Managing for the Future

Those who don’t get extensive thinking and decision exposure
to the work necessary to navigate a changing world
will most likely become a prisoner of the past.

If they don’t get the right exposure at work, where will they get it?

And what are the social and economic consequences of
directing work based yesterday’s assumptions?





Management and Economic Development


Management creates economic and social development.

Economic and social development is the result of management.

It can be said, without too much oversimplification, that there are no “underdeveloped countries.”

There are only “undermanaged” ones.

This means that management is the prime mover and that development is a consequence.

All our experience in economic development proves this.

Wherever we have only capital, we have not achieved development.

In the few cases where we have been able to generate management energies, we have generated rapid development.

Development, in other words, is a matter of human energies rather than of economic wealth.

And the generation and direction of human energies is the task of management.”

Feb 20 — The Daily Drucker



Rarely in human history has any institution emerged as quickly as management or had as great an impact so fast.

In less than 150 years, management has transformed the social and economic fabric of the world’s developed countries.

It has created a global economy and set new rules for countries that would participate in that economy as equals.

And it has itself been transformed.

AS WE ADVANCE deeper into the knowledge economy, the basic assumptions underlying much of what is taught and practiced in the name of management are hopelessly out of date.” — Management’s New Paradigm

Few executives are aware of the tremendous impact management has had.

Indeed, a good many are like M. Jourdain, the character in Le Bourgeois Gentilhomme, the Molière play, who did not know that he spoke prose.

They barely realize that they practice—or mispractice—management.

As a result, they are ill-prepared for the tremendous challenges that now confront them.

The truly important problems managers face do not come from technology or politics.

They do not originate outside management and enterprise.

They are problems caused by the very success of management itself.

To be sure, the fundamental task of management remains the same:

to make people capable of joint performance through common goals, common values, the right structure, and the training and development they need to perform and to respond to change.

But the very meaning of this task has changed, if only because the performance of management has converted the workforce from one composed largely of unskilled laborers to one of highly educated knowledge workers.

orgaization evolution

Apple ™ — from two guys in a garage to iPhone X




The managed institution — society’s way of getting things done.


Knowledge — THE resource


From Knowledge to KnowledgeS


the central energy of a modern society —
it (knowledge) exists only in application


“That knowledge has become the resource,
rather than a resource,
is what makes our society “post-capitalist.”
This fact changes—fundamentally—the structure of society.
It creates new social and economic dynamics.
It creates new politics.

“The post-capitalist society is both
a knowledge society and a society of organizations,
each dependent on the other
and yet each very different in its concepts, views, and values.”

“In the knowledge society,
it is not the individual who performs.

The individual is a cost center
rather than a performance center.

It is the organization that performs.”

“It is the very nature of knowledge
that it changes fast and
that today’s certainties
will be tomorrow’s absurdities” — Peter Drucker

“The productivity of knowledge is going to be
the determining factor in the competitive position
of a company, an industry, an entire country” — PFD


The terms knowledge industries, knowledge work and knowledge worker
are nearly fifty years old.

They were coined around 1960, simultaneously but independently—
the first by a Princeton economist, Fritz Machlup,
the second and third by this writer.

Now everyone uses them, but as yet hardly anyone
understands their implications for human values and human behavior,
for managing people and making them productive,
for economics, and for politics.

What is already clear, however, is that the emerging knowledge society
and knowledge economy will be radically different
from the society and economy of the late twentieth century.
Chapter 4, Management, Revised Edition

… “For the major new insights in every one
of the specialized knowledges arise out of another,
separate specialty, out of another one of the knowledges.

Both economics and meteorology are being transformed
at present by the new mathematics of chaos theory.
Geology is being profoundly changed by the physics of matter;
archaeology, by the genetics of DNA typing;
history, by psychological, statistical, and technological analyses
and techniques.” Chapter 48, Management, Revised Edition

Peter observed that we are now in another critical moment:
the transition from the industrial to the knowledge-based economy
We should expect radical changes in society
as well as in business.
“We haven’t seen all those changes yet,” he added.
Even the very products we buy will change drastically. …
He spent the better part of the next two hours defining and pulling this idea apart
(the application of knowledge to knowledge): the importance of
accessing, interpreting, connecting, and translating knowledgemore

The End of Economic Man

Up to Poverty ::: The Vanishing East ::: The rise of new power centers :::
Urban world: The shifting global business landscape

A Century of Social Transformation ::: The priority tasks

Technology, Management and Society

Profits & Profitability

Management and the World’s Work

The New Society of Organizations

From Analysis to Perception — The New Worldview

Knowledge and Technology

Knowledge: Its Economics and Productivity

Management’s New Paradigms

The Next Society

All of this embedded within …

Glossary (wip)

Information — the organizing principle for work

A world organized by information

Search for “knowledge” here




Knowledge, especially advanced knowledge, is always specialized.

By itself it produces nothing.

Yet a modern business, and not only the largest ones, may employ up to 10,000 highly knowledgeable people who represent up to sixty different knowledge areas.

Engineers of all sorts, designers, marketing experts, economists, statisticians, psychologists, planners, accountants, human resources people—all working together in a joint venture.

None would be effective without the managed enterprise.

After World War II we began to see that management is not business management.

It pertains to every human effort that brings together in one organization people of diverse knowledge and skills.

It needs to be applied to all social sector institutions, such as hospitals, universities, churches, arts organizations, and social-service agencies, which since World War II have grown faster in the United States than either business or government.

For even though the need to manage volunteers or raise funds may differentiate nonprofit managers from their for-profit peers, many more of their responsibilities are the same—among them defining the right strategy and goals, developing people, measuring performance, and marketing the organization’s services.

Management, world-wide, has become the new social function.

There is no point in asking which came first: the educational explosion of the last hundred years or the management that put this knowledge to productive use.

Modern management and modern enterprise could not exist without the knowledge base that developed societies have built.

But equally it is management, and management alone, that makes effective all this knowledge and these knowledgeable people.

The emergence of management has converted knowledge from social ornament and luxury into the true capital of any economy.




… This means a radical change in structure for the organizations of tomorrow.

It means that the big business, the government agency, the large hospital, the large university will not necessarily be the one that employs a great many people.

It will be the one that has substantial revenues and substantial results—achieved in large part because it itself does only work that is focused on its mission; work that is directly related to its results; work that it recognizes, values, and rewards appropriately.

The rest it contracts out. — Post-Capitalist Society




Thoughts about the future


The future depends on what’s between each individual’s ears.

Foundations For Future Directed Decisions

Extrapolating yesterdayS is a fruitless attempt to predict the future.

Trying to predict the future
is like driving down a country road at night
with no headlights on and
looking out the back window”

“We know only two things about the future.

It cannot be known.
It will be different from what exists now
and from what we now expect”
Peter Drucker

The actual results of action are not predictable.

Indeed, if there is one rule for action,
and especially for institutional action,
it is that the expected results will not be attained.

The unexpected is practically certain.

But are the unexpected results deleterious? Read more

The future that has already happened


economic content and structure clp

The structure of the U.S. economy
is remarkably different
from what everybody thinks


Three big survival trends

1. the global shrinking of the young population
and the emergence of the new workforce

2. the steady decline of manufacturing
as a producer of wealth and jobs

3. the changes in the form, the structure, and
the function of the corporation and
of its top management.


Is labor still an asset?

“Every state, county, and city in America is desperately trying to attract
manufacturers who offer blue-collar jobs.

Poor rural states like Kentucky and Tennessee have lured
Japanese automobile manufacturers with offers of long-range
tax benefits and low-interest loans.

The city of Los Angeles in early 1992 awarded a multi-billion-dollar contract
for rapid-transit equipment to the company that promised
to create all of ninety-seven manufacturing jobs
in a region that has almost 15 million inhabitants!

By contrast, Japanese companies are moving manual work
in manufacturing out of Japan as fast as they can
into the United States; into plants at the
U.S.-Mexican border; into Indonesia.

In the United States, manufacturing jobs
are seen as a priceless asset.

In Japan, they are more and more
seen as a liability.”

Shortly after the end of the Korean War

forbes lists

Marketing ::: Innovation


Organization efforts: Problems or Opportunities?

Knowledge ::: Strengths
Outside results ::: Performance

Productivity and social dynamics

Management (a shock to the system)

Competition on the road ahead

What needs doing around here?
A local view from Google Earth

It’s between the ears — the dangerS of
being a prisoner of yesterdayS

Forbes: America's Most Miserable Cities 2013

Post-Capitalist Society — a knowledge society is born
Management Challenges for the 21st Century — a reversal of patterns
Managing in the Next Society — three big survival trends
Production — everywhere with a shrinking labor content

Thinking along a brainroad

“Managers are synthesizers
who bring resources together
and have that ability to “smell” opportunity and timing.

Today perceptiveness is more important than analysis.

In the new society of organizations,
you need to be able to recognize patterns
to see what is there
rather than what you expect to see.”
Interview: Post-Capitalist Executive

local business

Along the road to Terra Alta

Urban world: The shifting global business landscape

urban world

Anthony Bourdain: Parts Unknown

topics and time periods




Difficulties of living in a changing world

bbx How does a person think about things they aren’t already thinking about?

bbx When we are embedded in doing something we are likely blind to the profoundly changing world around us.

bbx How do we keep our brain focused on the real road ahead and what’s next without it naturally slipping back into the normal daily flow of events that eventually lead to dead ends? Beware assumptions

bbx There’s no way to know what someone is going to be doing in ten or fifteen years.

bbx Just about everybody enters the world of work through known day-to-day operating work.

bbx How could we ever acquire a strategic and dynamic worldview from our beginning vantage points?

bbx When the time comes to begin creating tomorrowS, what mental radar content will be available?

bbx There is a need to work on this when there is no apparent need.

bbx Otherwise, it sabotages one-self and one’s fellow employees, organization, community …




Just reading is not enough

Creating a work plan

Harvest to action

Harvesting and implementing Work

Jumping off points for

People with organization responsibility

People with individual responsibility and concern

Leadership entry point

Early career work (a first draft) has over 500 interconnected pages
— a bread-crumb trail through time

TLN conceptual resource file listing — topics and books



How is this site different from the education system?

First, it primarily uses Peter Drucker’s work. Although he passed away in 2005 he’s still the top of the food chain — this should be important to you. He had a completely different approach from narrow subject specialists. His breath of insight is unmatched.

Second, there are over thirty web pages featuring Edward de Bono’s work on thinking as a skill. Thinking is basically not taught in our education system.

Third, there are outlines of quite a few other author’s work.

Fourth, there is a concepts to daily action work approach. It has both a macro and micro focus for working through time.

Fifth, there are several broad landscape views that provide macro contexts.

Sixth, the links between pages provide a bread-crumb trail through time. How do you think about things you’re not already thinking about? A changing world makes this imperative.


line’s purpose is to provide a big picture thinking landscape for navigating our changing world — a world in profound transition.

There are 500+ pages inter-weaving management, leadership, organization evolution, the evolving content and structure of society, knowledge, technology, career evolution, education, learning, marketing, production, innovation, entrepreneurship, thinking, software tools, information challenges, concepts to daily action … through time. Any time someone is engaged in decision thinking they need a “foundation for future directed decisions.” © is largely inspired by the work of Peter Drucker and a few others.

The site provides a “menu” for identifying important “things” to work toward that largely go unseen.

We can only work on, with and toward the “things” on our active “mental radar.”

evidence board

In a changing world, we need a way to repeatedly look beyond current mental involvements.

We need a way to think about things we aren’t already thinking about at multiple points in time. Waiting for a crisis is one way to accomplish this, but surely there are better ways.’s uniquely broad landscape is designed to meet this challenge.

TomorrowS can’t be reached by today’s activities or thinking. Examples constantly flow through the news.

Who in 1950, 1970, 1990, 2000 … had an adequate future facing radar?

Why would today be any different?

Where and how we spend our time matters — a world in constant flux.



I’m trying to provide this exploration and thinking landscape to help people figure out what to do as we move deeper into the 21st century: a knowledge society, a society of organizations, and a network society.


America’s future depends on this awareness, ability and effective action.

It depends on younger generations having access to this dynamic type thinking and doing something effective. provides the access and a work approach model.

Just about everybody enters the world of work through known, routine, day-to-day operating work at a point in time. It never seems to occur to nearly anybody that there could be anything else. How could we ever acquire a strategic, dynamic worldview from our beginning vantage points?

Pretending that tomorrow is going to be like yesterday is damaging.


Everybody has a vested interest in this.


For the site to remain available your support is needed. Your support helps with the books, software, web site hosting, and the time devoted to publicizing and enhancing the work approach available on

Who do you know that might be interested in working with me on spreading site usage and enhancement?

For the right kind of people, provides the elements of a future facing consulting or mentoring practice. Contact info is near the bottom of most pages.






To create a site search, go to Google’s site ↓

Type the following in their search box ↓

your search text






Copyright 1985 through 2020 © All rights reserved | bobembry | bob embry | “time life navigation” © #TimeLifeNavigation | “life TIME investment system” © #LifeTimeInvestmentSystem | “career evolution” © #CareerEvolution | “life design” © #LifeDesign | “organization evolution” © #OrganizationEvolution | “brainroads toward tomorrows” © #BrainroadsTowardTomorrows | “foundations for future directed decisions” © #FoundationsForFutureDirectedDecisions | #rlaexpdotcom © | rlaexpdotcom © = rla + exp = real life adventures + exploration or explored

exploration leads to explored

Examples ↑ can be found through web searches, Wikipedia
and the daily news

#rlaexpdotcom introduction breadcrumb trail …