Episode 172: John Furey of MindTime: A Universal Framework for Understanding People
For more than a dozen years, John Furey has been perfecting an entirely new and universal framework for UNDERSTANDING PEOPLE.
You know Myers Briggs. You know Strengthsfinder by Gallup and my past DishyMix guest, Marcus Buckingham.
You may even know what Color Your Parachute is.
Now, learn the most simple and elegant way to understand others, speak to them in ways that they like to communicate and even build more effective teams, using The Mind Time Model.
This model can not only be used to increase the efficacy of collaborate teams, or to understand the perspective of your particular organization, it can be used in marketing to create messages that are most appropriately stated for your clusters of customers.
First, take the survey yourself at http://mindtimemaps.com/start/adtech.
See what your blend of Past, Present and Future is and how it compares to others in the digital marketing industry.
Then, listen to this interview where John describes how the model parses all humans into 10 Archtypes (not ficticious personas) and how the structure can be used for collaboration and messaging.
Burham Marketing and Catalyst SF have joined together with MindTime to create Telepathy, a new organization devoted to leveraging the elegance of this construct for Cognitive Targeting.
And join John Furey and I at ad:tech NY 2010 for a keynote luncheon on November 3rd http://bit.ly/9aZZku
DishyMix listeners, get a free copy of “It’s All About Time: How People Work and Why Some Do It Better - A Guide for Executives, Entrepreneurs and Everyone Else.” Just post your desire on the DishyMix Facebook Page http://www.facebook.com/DishyMix.
John Furey Susan Bratton: Welcome to DishyMix. I’m your host, Susan Bratton, and on today’s show you’re going to get to meet John Furey. John is the founder and CEO of a company based out here in the Bay area called MindTime. This is going to be interesting to you at two or three levels. It’s going to be interesting to you at a personal level because you’re going to take a survey and find out exactly what kind of archetype you are. The second thing that’s going to be interesting for you about is collaboration within your own organization, work groups, businesses, even in some of your personal projects. And the third thing that’s going to be interesting to you about the MindTime model is how its applied this concept of cognitive targeting to messaging for brands and organizations based on the archetypes that we as humans naturally fall into. So lets get John on the show. He’s here with me live in California today and we’ll learn all about the MindTime model and who you are now. Welcome John.
John Furey: Good morning Susan.
Susan Bratton: It’s great to have you here in person. It’s always nice to…
John Furey: It’s great to be here…
Susan Bratton: look you in the eye…
John Furey: Yeah. Terrific.
Susan Bratton: Beautiful! So obviously the first place we have to start is give us the levelset on the MindTime model.
John Furey: Well, you know, it’s one of those remarkably simple things that you look at it from the surface and you go like, “That can’t explain humans.” And then you realize that there are so many layers to it. So I’m going to just give you the top layer, and the listeners, you know, welcome once they’ve taken the survey online to really explore for themselves. There’s a lot of information and feedback there. So here it is. When we’re not here, when we’re not actually physically in our bodies very much in the now, as the sort of contemporary expression is, when we’re not there where are we? Well of course we’re off in our thoughts. And when we’re off in our thoughts we’re not really paying attention to what’s right in front of us. We’re paying attention to somewhere else, and that somewhere else is fascinating, because what we do – and we’re known for thousands of years about this – what we do is we disappear off into time. We’re either remembering the past or we’re trying to organize the present or we’re imaging a future that hasn’t happened yet. So MindTime, as the name sort of suggests, is where the mind goes when it’s not in the physical world but it’s really off in its thoughts and its imagination. So each of us it turns out actually blends the perspectives of future, present and past in different proportions. It’s sort of like how we mix things up for ourselves and our thinking. And the result of that is in fact our thinking. Now if you consider that this mix of these three different perspectives of the world – you know, my future and my aspirations, the vision I have for it, perhaps an upcoming event mixed in with my plan, what I’m doing today, what I need to get done, what I committed to getting done, what I’ve got to finish, those sort of immediately pressing things – and that other part of it, which is “Well how did I get here? What’s my life about? Where have I come from, and who am I? What do I understand of this world?” So that future, present and past, as we mix those up, form the genesis of all thought, and when you consider that for human beings everything that we do begins with a thought, you start to get a little bit of an inkling, a little bit of a clue as to how incredibly important it is for us to actually understand how we blend these three basic perspectives of time. And as we blend them we create these archetypes and it’s through these very simple archetypes that we begin to understand how we interact as humans and what the world is for us and how we perceive it
Susan Bratton: So there’s a ratio of past, present and future time spent in thought that’s unique to every single person, but in general I would imagine it’s almost always a blend but I sent that for many people they lead with one of those. People live often more in the present, the past or the future in general. Is that true?
John Furey: Yes, absolutely Susan. You’ve hit the nail on the head. And the fact of the matter is this. If you have three glasses and you fill them up when they all have some water in them, together they would collectively add up to a hundred percent. Our mental energy is now being distributed between these three glasses and the glasses representing variously future, present and past. So if my glass – and for example, my glass really is the future glass filled up pretty full, and past and present kind of lacking – that means that the very way I look at the world is with a lot of attention spent on the future and the possibilities and the potential and the opportunities, I get very excited. I love communicating, like you might not be able to guess. But when it comes down to that (unintelligible) aspect, the sort of research and information and what do I really know about things, I really need to rely on other people who’ve got more of that. So being conscious of, if you will, how my buckets are filled up, how my proportions are actually balanced gives me the enormous insight that I need to be able to know well, if this is what I’m bringing to the world, who do I need to reach out to to bring their value to the picture so that I don’t fall into my own sand trap as it were, so I don’t stumble on my own shortcomings.
Susan Bratton: So one of the things that I want to encourage you to do is to take the MindTime survey, and John and I are actually going to be presenting at AdTech New York, and if you’re listening to this before early November 2010 and you’ve gotten this DishyMix soon and you’re going to be at AdTech New York, I’ll be interviewing John all about this on the stage, and we’re encouraging people to take the survey now. You go to mindtimemaps.com/start/adtech, and then your survey will not only give you your own results about how much time you spend in past, present and future, but it will also allow us to look at all of the people who are involved in AdTech and where they lay across the entire continuum. John, describe what my listener today is going to see as the result of taking the MindTime survey, your triangular kind of view….
John Furey: Yeah, the map.
Susan Bratton: ‘Cause that’s interesting, the map.
John Furey: Yeah, it is. It’s fascinating. You know, it’s one of those quirky things that it turns out that because of the nature of time having three component parts – future, present and past – we can actually create a map by actually drawing a triangle. So if you imagine the triangle in your minds, listeners, and you see this triangle in front of you in the bottom right hand corner is future, the top middle is present, and the bottom left is past. When we plot someone in there we actually use what we think of as our GPS for the mind, and it works just like a real GPS out in space. What (unintelligible) says is like given the future signal, the present signal and the past signal, to what degree are you listening to these three signals? And the GPS triangulates you then and puts you in the map where you’re appropriate given the signal strength. And what that does is it means that we can look at groups of people, audiences, communities, societies, organizations, even cultures, whatever group we want to put, we can actually look at them within this map and get an understanding for both the culture, the dynamics, the communication issues, and it’s enormously predictive. So what they will see online are really two different things. On the one hand the first thing is the map and it’s wonderfully exciting, and you can kind of point to the dots and click on them and you get to learn about the different thinking styles. And you also get a pretty long verbal interpretation; in other words it’s about 120,000 words of writing went into these feedback pieces that we put in there so that people could learn about their own thinking. On top of that there’s also a section called MindTime Media, which teach you all about MindTime and how it actually works and how you can use it to benefit in collaboration, in groups, in relationships and things like that. So it’s a very rich site, it’s all free, but the key is is that for AdTech we’re going to get an insight into who are you, this audience called AdTech, and how do you necessarily think about… I think we might actually have some fun with that on stage in New York in November, that’s what I meant to say.
Susan Bratton: Absolutely. And, you know, it’s interesting too, it’s always fascinating to learn about yourself and to know, you know, where you land on the map. It’s also very interesting to learn about an organization or a group of people. I would imagine actually if you looked at the MindTime map of a group of doctors versus a group of internet marketers that the potential would be perhaps that the doctors would heavily be more skewed towards the past because they have to be so analytical in a database of human ills and understand what happened in the past and apply it to the future, but they’re probably much more living in the past than all the future thinkers of the digital marketing age of, you know, the world of AdTech. They’re probably a lot heavier up potentially in the future thinking.
John Furey: Yeah, you’re right, you’re right. And, you know, one of the interesting things we started to do a survey of the digital media industry, the digital marketing industry this year. And what we wanted to look at was both based on age and a whole series of different demographics; what has happened within the industry as the digital age came upon us. So those folks who’ve been in sort of marketing advertising for perhaps, I don’t know, 20, 25 years, was their thinking style, which is this mix, this archetype, was their thinking style the same as the youngins who are coming in today and have only been in maybe five or ten years, and it is fascinating, ‘cause when we see the difference…
Susan Bratton: Is it different?
John Furey: Yeah…
Susan Bratton: ‘Cause I wonder if the young ones are more executionally oriented and less vision oriented.
John Furey: Again, you’ve hit it on the head. It’s not just execution though; it’s analytical, so…
Susan Bratton: Analyticals, yeah.
John Furey: more past and more present thinking…
Susan Bratton: Yeah.
John Furey: in the new people…
Susan Bratton: That makes total sense to me.
John Furey: the new tribe coming in than the people who used to be – what’s it called, the advertising show on television, Mad Dogs…
Susan Bratton: Mad Men.
John Furey: Mad Men, that’s it. Thank you. Okay, so Mad Men, those kind of highly creative genius people that come up with some whacking great big off the wall campaign that the client just sits there and goes like, “Okay yeah, I’ll spend five million”, that culture is gone, and yet the people who peopled that culture are actually pretty senior in the industry.
Susan Bratton: Yes.
John Furey: So we’ve got this really interesting change of cultural mechanisms, if you will, and quite a lot of angst I have to say in the older agencies as they’re trying to shift from the old school created drives to the new school digital analytics and follow through in execution is on a par, if not senior to creative, and that shift is a very, very real problem for a lot of agencies.
Susan Bratton: And I want to get into that a little bit later in the show because what we’re really going to talk about is applying the MindTime model, the three basic architects and then all the myriad combinations of archetypes that can be in this model. And we’re going to apply them to two things, talk about two things; one, collaboration, how a framework can be applied to any team, organization or what have you; and then also to messaging, how a brand communicates beyond persona marketing into this kind of new cognitive targeting world. But before we do I want to get a little bit deeper into the actual types, the three types, and how they’re different. And I’ll just share a little quick personal story, which I thought was kind of interesting and that is that the minute I met you John – Brad Barrens introduced us – the minute I met you I took the survey. And I come out as a person who is listening primarily in the present and near future, and that wasn’t surprising to me. And then the minute I took it I said to my husband Tim, “Please take this survey. I know you don’t like to do stuff like this, but just do it for me honey. It’ll only take a minute”, and he came up as being in the past, very analytical, and in the far future, and that’s how he tends to think. He takes of the historical information and does an analysis and projects out where the future’s going, and he’s amazing at it. And I think that’s why we get along in our marriage and that we work together because we are the continuum together, but separately we kind of fall apart. And it’s those complimentary skillsets that work really well, which is a perfect segway into how this can be applied at a collaborative level. So first describe the three basic archetypes so people get a framework, and then describe how that lays into team work and running a business and the agency of the future, wherever you want to go with that.
John Furey: Yeah, lovely. Okay, great. Terrific, thanks for the opportunity to describe these because, you know, I think one of the things that we found really amazing over the years is what makes MindTime unique is it’s accessible, accessible…
Susan Bratton: You can remember it.
John Furey: You can remember it, yeah.
Susan Bratton: Right, we talked about Myers Briggs and like who remembers that they’re an ENTJ or whatever they are, and what that means, like you can barely remember your own.
John Furey: And it’s not that it’s not a really good instrument, just it’s not accessible.
Susan Bratton: It’s not a useful enough filter, you can’t recall it and segment it easily. But if I know you’re a past and far future…
John Furey: You got all you need.
Susan Bratton: that’s what I’m going to leverage you for.
John Furey: So it’s this language that is a natural language that we already know that we can use to describe how we’re really thinking that makes us extraordinarily useful. So if you can, if all you do is just remember these next few minutes you will change your life. Quite literally you will start to change the way you look at other people and yourself in relationship to them.
Susan Bratton: And how you communicate to other people. It’s really another form of NLP to m.
John Furey: Absolutely. In fact it’s…
Susan Bratton: It’s just an extension of NLP.
John Furey: Well I will tell you it’s the foundation of NLP in some ways.
Susan Bratton: Well there you go, uh huh.
John Furey: So it’s not a different thing. NLP is the neural linguistic program that comes out of the very perspectives we use in our thinking. So lets describe them. I’m going to start with the future one. So the future is literally about the future and you don’t have to learn anything new here, nothing conceptually or no language. Think about standing on the edge of today looking forward into the future. The part of our mind that can do that, if you will, is the part of the mind that wants to see the big picture. It is trying to assess what are the possibilities in here? What are the opportunities? The kind of thinking that’s happening is very high frequency, it’s very bouncing around, it’s energetic, it’s enthusiastic, it’s extroverted, it’s extraordinarily articulate, it loves to have an audience and it likes to use words to describe to that audience something that doesn’t exist yet. You see visionaries who are typically future thinkers – they have to be of course – those visionaries, what they’re doing essentially is painting in the audiences mind a picture of something that doesn’t exist. Now when you think about that, that takes a lot of enthusiasm, it takes a lot of a certain quality of energy, which we think of as persuasion or convincing people. So when future thinkers, those future mind, sees an opportunity or sees a possibility, it’s job is to excite the energy in the audience around it so that everybody sees it. Then that future thinking gets what it wants. It wants that idea to be born. It doesn’t know how to birth the idea – that’s not the job of future thinking, that’s the job of present thinking. But what it can do is excite the energy in peoples minds to the point where people get it, they see it for themselves. They get excited. The idea, if you will, is planted in their own mind whether they were dominant in future thinking or not because everybody has some of it. So future thinking is about cleaving or creating a space in our world for an idea to grow.
Susan Bratton: Hey, hold that thought. Lets take a break now. We’ve done future. Lets come back and do present and past and then talk about how it lays into collaboration so I can keep you going and not worry about that. All right, so lets run to a quick break. I always want to thank my sponsors. You know that’s the life blood of DishyMix. And we’re going to be right back with John Furey. It’s f-u-r-e-y. He’s the founder and CEO of MindTime, and I want to encourage you again to go to mindtimemaps.com/start/adtech, take the survey in the AdTech bucket so we can not personally identifiably of course, completely confidentially, roll you up into that greater map of our organization or at least part of our industry. I also want to let you know I have two free copies of It’s All About Time: A Guide For Executives, Entrepreneurs and Everyone Else, how people work and why some do it better by John Furey. It goes into even more depth about what we’re talking. So we’ll go to a break, come right back. Hang on.
Susan Bratton: We’re back with John Furey, CEO and founder of MindTime. John was just describing to you the future thinker, the one of charisma and ideas. And you probably, many of you, identified with that yourself. But now lets listen to what the present thinker and the past thinker have to add to the equation. John?
John Furey: Yes, lovely. Okay, so that future thinker creating the space for the idea. Now the present thinker of course is about actually getting it done. It’s only in the present that we can do things, and because of that this present thinking has the kinds of qualities that are like “I need to finish what I start. I must have a plan.” How are we going to organize this? And indeed it’s actually this is about probability because the present thinker is really concerned with the probability of the plan coming out the way that it should. So lets take a very simple example. Lets take a mother-in-law planning her daughters wedding or the wedding for her daughter and son-in-law, and in the process her present thinking is going, “Okay, we don’t know whether it’s going to rain, there’s a 30 percent probability that it will, so what we’re going to do is we’re going to put a tent out on the lawn so if it does we’ll have a plan B. We don’t know if the DJ is going to turn up on time, so lets make sure that the hotel has some piped in music or whatever. Probability is it will but maybe 5 percent probability that it won’t, so we will have a backup plan.” In other words, what they’re trying to do is to assess the likelihood that it’s all going to go to plan and make sure where the probability isn’t very good that there is a backup plan, that we know what we’re going to do, because the, if you will, the anathema, the absolute nightmare of a present thinker is to be in a situation where they don’t have any plan whatsoever. That’s melt down, that’s stress zone. So present thinking is organized, it’s planned, it’s orchestrated. And you can tell the degree of sort of the span of control of the present thinker, really it speaks a lot to how stronger they are in this and how intelligently they’re using it. So people who can run whole cities or organizations and the administration and the accounting and the processes and the customer service and the follow through and all of those wonderful things that I can see, it’s this like big, big thing that has to happen. People who know how to do that, big present thinkers. Okay, so present thinking is about getting it done. Past thinking; now these three I have to remind you are very, very different from each other. They are not kind of similar or a little bit different; they are radically different survival concepts. And these three, if you will, forces of thinking – possibility future, probability present and certainty past – are the mix that goes into creating our ability to survive as human beings. And that certainty one, past thinking, is really about not having enough information is a dangerous thing in and of itself. So you mention that Tim for example has a lot of that past thinking. Well, you know, thank goodness because having that information and knowing that it is at a higher probability as possible accurate, in other words you know where it came from, you know that this is verified information, it gives you that certainty, it gives you that ability to move forward with a level of conviction that frankly you can’t really do if you don’t have that information. And you might see sort of future thinkers leaping off cliffs all the time with their great ideas, but we also see that at the bottom of the cliff there’s an awful lot of bodies lying around. You don’t get past thinkers leaping off cliffs and ending up as bodies at the bottom of it; it just doesn’t happen. These people play it safe. And it’s not ‘cause they’re sticks in the mud, it’s because they really understand the consequences of not having the right information. So what they’re going to do is this; they’re going to look to how can I acquire, how can I get information, knowledge and more importantly a deep understanding of the essence of what it s that I’m trying to do before committing my energy, before committing my resources to actually doing it. And in essence it’s like walking backwards into the future. It’s like in order to know where to step behind myself as I walk backwards into the future, I must have the information that tells me where to step. And that’s what you were mentioning Tim is doing. He’s like laying it out in front of him but kind of behind him, because he’s looking behind him to move forward into the future. So there you have it. We have this possibility driven future. We have this practical probability driven present. And we have this deep and understanding and developing the understanding of things in the past. And between those tree and how we blend them it creates our archetypes. So of course we could be future and a bit of present, which is future present, or we could be present with a little bit of future like yours is, or we could be like Tim, strong past and strong future. So the way that we blend these creates this wonderful map of 10 archetypes of course ‘cause there are only 3 moving pieces.
Susan Bratton: So you said 10 archetypes?
John Furey: Yes.
Susan Bratton: Is that how it comes out of the past and the future, all the combinations are 10?
John Furey: All the combinations plus the unobvious one which is an equal measure of all three which is called the integrated.
Susan Bratton: Integrated, uh huh. How common is that?
John Furey: You know, it’s pretty much as common as all of the others are.
Susan Bratton: Oh is it?
John Furey: Yeah.
Susan Bratton: Oh that’s interesting.
John Furey: If you look at the sort of distribution curve you get less common at the higher end of the intensities…
Susan Bratton: Yes…
John Furey: So someone who’s…
Susan Bratton: Of course.
John Furey: very, very strong future, less common in people who are middling future.
Susan Bratton: Yeah. That makes sense.
John Furey: It does make sense, doesn’t it?
Susan Bratton: So we have these ten archetypes, and you can build more effective and responsive teams with this. You say that there’s really a right mix of thinking styles. Now of course that’s probably partly the right mix for a project or a group who’s trying to do something, depends on what it is they’re trying to accomplish most of the time, doesn’t it?
John Furey: Very much so, yes indeed.
Susan Bratton: So how do you go about the process of understanding? Lets just say you take your whole management team or your whole organization and you put them through the whole MindTime model, and then you have this, you know, this chart, your triangle with the people all over it; who you going to fire? Like, you know, how do you see…
John Furely: Hopefully nobody.
Susan Bratton: How do you see where you’re missing people? How do you see people who are in the wrong jobs? How do you get more insight into that? What’s a typical scenario?
John Furey: Yes, well you asked a great question. And again, I think we have the tendency as humans to want to really make things complicated, so my mission in life is keep it simple. I love that idea of keeping it simple. So it is simple, really simple. When you look at that map, as we call it, the map of the world of thinking, and you have actually had all of your team take the profile – and of course you can, we offer organizations the ability to map and to create a group for themselves – what it does is it gives you that map and when you look at it you look at the distribution, you’re kind of like “Where’s the hold?” Now the hold is what you don’t have, and then you go “Well where’s the mass? Where’s the density?”, and that’s what you do have. And you can answer then two questions. First of all you go the mass, the densest part of the map is where the cultural center is going to be of my organization. So lets say that my cultural center is strongly future oriented, and I go like, “Wow, I have a lot of future thinking people in my organization, you know. Great, okay.” So ergo, our culture is about vision, inspiration, articulation, persuasion, etcetera, etcetera. Now if you’re in the business of selling, congratulations. You probably have the right mix. You may have some problems over in accounting and you may have some problems in RND, but you’re going to do good in sales. However, if you’re cultural center was predominantly future and you’re actually trying to run the Library of Congress, uh oh, look out. You’ve got a problem, ‘cause what you’ve got is a bunch of creative innovators in the midst of an environment that requires organization, orchestration and understanding. So the map tells you the culture of the organization, and it tells you what your organization will and will not be good at doing. The map also tells you where you have these blind spots or these areas of absence. And lets go back to that example I was just using of the very future oriented map. And lets say that in fact you’re a town planning department, and as a town planning department your job is to make this town run more efficiently, cars move more effectively, parking meters collect more money and all of those good things that town planners like to do. Now if on that map of your town, the team, there is a rather large hole in that present thinking area, what this tells you is the reason why as town planners you’re probably going to suck, because the fact of the matter is you don’t have the mental energy, the basic pools to be able to work at the things that you need to work at. So the first level of awareness and looking at this is what we do and we don’t have. It gives us this awareness and this ah ha moment for most executives going like, “Wow, that’s why that launch didn’t work” or “That’s why our RNT team is always in conflict with our sales department.” It makes the unspoken invisible become obvious because thinking is the great invisible force at work in every organization, society and culture. And when we guess it that the physical world that we can look at that we, if you will, it manifests itself in front of our eyes, is only one of the true worlds that is actually operating and that the other world is an invisible force of thinking and mental energy and it is just as powerful, if not more powerful, ‘cause it’s what shapes the physical world, at that point in time you get it that this map is a map that reveals what is really happening in the organization because you don’t hire people to show up in their bodies, you really hire people to show up with their mental energy and their creativity. So that leads to that really big question, which is “Well how do you then use that to get people collaborating with their creativity?” And that’s probably one of the most exciting things that MindTime really reveals for us is how to blend groups, how to actually create a group and create awareness, the understanding within the group that allows people to work together by understanding the value that they actually bring.
Susan Bratton: Right, it naturally engenders a level of appreciation and insight into a given individual, just by know what their map is, right?
John Furey: Yeah, you know, it’s funny, over the years people have tried to put this into all kinds of little buckets as to what kind of business we are. And we came to the realization 7, 8 years ago that we’re actually in the business of creating awareness. That actually is the most profound thing that we do is we switch on our light and it’s been an extraordinarily difficult thing to figure out how do you actually pay yourself for switching on light bulbs. Then we figured it out, but we are. It’s creating the awareness in your mind of what you’re doing and contributing and what you’re bringing of value, and then recognizing that others are going to work differently, they’re going to feel odd, they may even feel like they’re in conflict with you, but they are bringing their value. And when you get that understanding interpersonally and you clear out the messiness because you take it personally, then you start to create really, really powerful collaboration.
Susan Bratton: Yeah, that makes total sense. I really like the model a lot, and yet I also want to move on to the messaging piece of it because you’re applying the MindTime model and your ten archetypes to getting beyond the persona, the fictitious persona that marketers have been doing to date and coming up with a new way to understand your customers and to communicate to them in the way that they want to be communicated to. So tell us a little bit more about this whole idea of integrating models into CRM and marketing and messaging and how that would look. How would you go beyond doing persona marketing and into this actual use of maps?
John Furey: Well that’s a great question. So, you know, typically the creation of the persona, you create them out of gathering a set of data points about your audience if you will, what people are doing. And those data points essentially are then used to create this fictitious thing called a person. Well, I like to say, you know, a hundred data points do not create a person. So what the model allows us to do is rather than creating fictitious personas it allows us to actually look at our audience and segment it based on the actual personality of that group of people. So we’re segmenting on an archetype basis of reality, not fiction created for one given deployment of a marketing program. And what that allows us to do is if you think of it as like sort of a value chain all the way back to the essence of the creative stuff that’s being put together by the designers, by the ad creators, to the way that the analysts and the researchers are looking at the audience and the behaviors lets say online to the packaging of the product, to the CRM program. At every stage the same language, the same understanding, the same insight, the same awareness about your audience is being used by individuals that each individually have that awareness themselves now, so that they understand. So lets take Mavis and the core center. Mavis has a person online and she knows that the audience segmentation looks like strongly future audience. These were the early doctors of a new launch product. Mavis knows how to talk to this person. She’s easily trained. She can actually now if you will illicit the brand behavior more authentically, more transparently than if it was just another person on the telephone who had a problem with a product. So all the way from the creation of products to the creativity around how they’re sold, to the delivery of them, to the packaging of them, to the follow up and the marketing and the client support, at every step of the way the same set of archetypes, the same language, the same understanding and insight can be used. And that creates a strength around the brand, it creates an integrity around the brand, which is far beyond what can be achieved with fictitious representations like personas where Mavis and the core center may not really get what you mean or who you’re trying to describe in your persona description and now she’s just going to do the best job that she possibly can.
Susan Bratton: If you’re a brand who’s big enough to want to move from persona marketing to MindTime archetypes you probably have a pretty large audience. Wouldn’t it be such that it would be distributed across all ten archetypes, so how would you be able to segment these groups?
John Furey: Well that’s another great question. Yes, it is likely to be distributed across all of the archetypes. However, I would say that there are other demographics, there’s other data points, which – you know, besides your demographics – that you could collect that you would see that actually said actually the people who buy it who are in this other demographic are predominantly of this archetype. So archetypes and the sort of personas that they allow us to create is one level of the map. But of course as soon as we create the cross section with other existing demographics, it starts to make sense in saying like, ah, the audience which is the 24 to 35 year old female married is more predominantly a present audience product. The audience over here that is 45 to 54 male in the business environment and predominantly in start ups is more of this particular archetype. So what it does is it gives us a standard language. It doesn’t in any way nullify the value of understanding demographics. They’re very useful for segmenting the audiences for other purposes and for the purpose of then doing like these cross sections through the MindTime archetypes themselves. So whilst you do have, if you will, an appearance of all of the different archetypes potentially in a very big distributed audience, it still means that the individual who might be online has a specific thinking style archetype that you can target them individually when they’re online with the right ad or the right content, and it also means that certain audiences by demographic – Facebook, take LinkdIn – might have very specific archetypes given where it is that they flock to in terms of the groups and the social networks they might be a part of. So audiences naturally segment and actually people flock together when they’re of a kind, so you actually get that effect happening.
Susan Bratton: It makes sense, and also looking at a slide from, that Jason Burnham sent me. Now Jason, with Burnham Marketing and Catalyst, John, Corey and Jim at Catalyst SF, they’ve come together with MindTime to apply your model to the world of cognitive targeting, right, and they have a new company a new group…
John Furey: They have a new company…
Susan Bratton: Yeah.
John Furey: Yeah, and they’ve licensed the MindTime model and what they’re doing is they’re getting to experiment and play with and create partnerships with other companies, both in the sort of profiling database market place, as well as audience segmentation, CRM. And they’re going to create relationships to explore the power and the utility of MindTime. Now, you know, we’ve done this before, obviously we’ve been playing around with marketing archetypes and things like that for ages; but what’s really interesting to us is at the level which Jason and Michelle Burnham were operating and John Durham and the team at Catalyst SF, it really is going to be the first time that MindTime is being taken seriously as a product – or rather I should say as a methodology and as sort of a basic intellectual property and applied in the development of literal cognitive targeting product to serve the digital marketing industry. And it’s very, very exciting because it’s already getting the attention of some very big players in the media arena. And what it’s going to allow us to do is to learn and learn a great deal about how we can use and the various ways of deploying MindTime that are going to serve the digital marketing advertising arena.
Susan Bratton: There are two images, two slides here from this particular deck. I’m sure anybody can get it from Jason or from me, email me and I’ll make sure I connect you with Jason. The first one is this idea of cognitive targeting where there are three different ads based on the three core archetypes. So the past thinker ad is, these are for toothpaste, “Clinically proven the most effective toothpaste against plaque and gum disease”, right, it’s all the data…
John Furey: The authority buy, yeah…
Susan Bratton: social proof and data, historical analysis. And then the one on the top, which I think is oriented toward people in the present is, “Top value for everybody.” So in the moment, best price, it takes of all the people in my life, family…
John Furey: This is like one size fits all, it’s the utility, it’s practical.
Susan Bratton: And then the one for future thinkers, I can’t read the copy but it’s, there’s barely any copy. It’s just two super happy women lying in the grass looking at each other with a toothbrush full of toothpaste…
John Furey: Actually one’s a guy Susan. One’s a guy.
Susan Bratton: Oh, it’s a guy?
John Furey: I know we’re in San Francisco but that one is a guy.
Susan Bratton: It doesn’t look like a dude to me. But yeah, so it’s about the possibility of delight…
John Furey: Yup.
Susan Bratton: because I have sparkly white teeth.
John Furey: Yup. It’s an emotional play, you know, and people, the future thinkers get sucked into the potential, the possibility, “I too could be he or she” sort of thing.
Susan Bratton: Yeah, I loved that and then I was very interested in this other picture where you have the, you know how you have the triangle and you have a bunch of people mapped out on it; what do you call that?
John Furey: Well it’s a mapping…
Susan Bratton: It’s a map.
John Furey: It’s a map of a group, yeah.
Susan Bratton: So it’s a group map. That’s it, thank you. So in this group map what it shows is some of the customers make seasonal, this group makes seasonal purchases. This group prefers the professional, the personal help of experienced salespeople. This person falls off the site between the shopping cart and checkout. This group gives highest clicks on Ad Version One. This group way over here is highest clicks on Ad Version Two, you know. So there’s all these different scenarios of the way that customers take action or connect with your brand based on where they fall on the overall map.
John Furey: That’s right.
Susan Bratton: Mm hmm.
John Furey: This really speaks to what you were asking earlier about, you know, a big brand and surely that has an audience that’s distributed across all of the map. Indeed, and what you were just describing was yes they do; however when you look at these other data points, demographics and others, you’ll see that hey, the ones over here towards the right, futures, they were the early doctors. The ones who were slowest to the party, they may be clients today, they may be customers today, but they were the last to the party, they’re the past group who really needed to see the uptake and the validation and read the critics and the reports and the ratings, etcetera. So it allows you to look at your data and look at your audience and layer another level of intelligence into what the heck is going on, simply by revealing this invisible force of thinking that gives you the ability to predict. And we haven’t really used that word in our conversation this morning, but it is the most powerful predictor of human behavior because everything that we do begins with a thought. And if I can map where in the world of thinking you start your thinking I can predict your behavior with extraordinary accuracy.
Susan Bratton: I’m taking that in. That’s right, that’s the first time I actually thought about it from that level. Okay, I want to talk to you about a couple of other things before the end of the show. The first thing that I want to talk about is you said earlier in the show that its taken you many years to figure out the best applications and how you were going to distribute your model so that it was valuable to many people and that your company has artists and designers and theorists and thinkers and that, you know, you’re a culturally really unique collection of people who’ve come up with this theoretical framework. It’s not even theoretical, it’s an absolute framework in reality.
John Furey: It’s real…
Susan Bratton: It’s a real framework.
John Furey: Einstein said it was. Yeah, you can’t separate it from space. It’s space – time.
Susan Bratton: There you go. Beautiful! So I know that you want to accelerate the applications of the MindTime model and you’ve been looking for ways to do that. You mentioned to me that one of the things, you can’t launch it in every market where it has potential applications and that Creative Commons has put together this new concept. I’d love you to tell us about this because I think there are probably many people that listen to DishyMix that are CEO’s or founders of technology companies who realize that there’s not enough VC or energy in the universe for them to fully leverage the great stuff they came up with, and you’re onto a new idea about how you might do that that could be helpful for others.
John Furey: Yeah, you know, it’s been an extraordinary, extraordinary revelation for us. So we’ve been working at this for over 13 years and all along the way our aspiration was not just that we would be able to make a return for ourselves and our retirement accounts and our investors, but that we really would leave something behind us that was valuable for the world. So, you know, while we’re not so much beating our chest too much about that, the problem was that distributing, as you point out, distributing this to the world takes an enormous amount of money or really big control. However…
Susan Bratton: Even giving it away takes a lot of money.
John Furey: Absolutely. But you know what, the Creative Commons started in 2003 specifically around copywrites, and they within just a few years, have five hundred million submissions. This was a phenomena. Why? Because people realized that open architecture created creative innovation, and that if people could use each others work appropriately as per the Creative Commons, they could leverage it and it would become bigger, because you see, if I share the fish I caught with you I am worse off because I don’t have the fish I gave you. But if I share the idea that I had with you I don’t lose any part of the value of that idea, you just gain it, and then I gain on what you did with it. So that idea of sharing was brilliant but here was the rub; there was no possibility for using patents because patents are by nature protective of an idea’s utility. And what the Creative Commons has done – and it’s not released yet and we are very much looking forward to working with the Creative Commons – we are going to go… In all likelihood I should actually say for safety sake we are speculating that we are going to go in the New Year open source under the Creative Commons doctrines in our copywrites, our scientific works and the new one, the patents. And this is going to allow us to say look, in this group of areas we are going to protect these and say, “You can go do stuff with our invention, our patent, but you owe us money if you make money.” But in all of these other areas, like education for example, you can take MindTime, you can run with it, you can make money, you can build products and you can do it for free. All we want to do is to make sure that in some of these fields of uses, they call them, we get a chance to make the return on our investment of all of the sort of many, many years that we’ve invested and our investors have invested in us. So that this new idea of distribution which allows us to use our patents and not lose them, protect them, but give our invention, give our ideas to the rest of the world to actually play with and to amplify and grow on. You know, frankly we have conversations about it, it gives us goosebumps. We have no idea what people will do with MindTime in the future, but we are so excited because we know over the 13, 14 years we’ve been working at it, so much has evolved, so much has developed. 4 or 5 years from now who knows. It could be extraordinary.
Susan Bratton: Here’s what I want.
John Furey: Yeah.
Susan Bratton: I want the first people to use the patent Commons to open source your model in the field of education, and I want somebody to take all of the text books and put them into iPads and when a student is learning about American History, depending on their MindTime archetype and their learning style, they get to choose from a, you know, six different options their particular homework assignment and they just have it on their iPad, they didn’t have to carry any books or do anything like that. And then they get to excel and learn the information in a way that is perfect for them.
John Furey: Absolutely Susan. You know what, that’s a beautiful, beautiful vision, and I will tell you last year we worked with a high school up in Idaho, the Sage School in Ketchum Idaho – it’s actually Hailey Idaho – and we taught the entire school population, both faculty and students, about MindTime. I heard the other day from the headmaster Harry Williams, and Harry wrote me a letter and we had a long conversation afterwards that basically said the kids, the students had taken over, had put posters up on the walls describing the archetypes, had been teaching the faculty members and teachers how they needed to learn and had then started forming their working groups, student with student, in collaborative pods where each of their thinking styles was present so they could actually execute. Isn’t that amazing?
Susan Bratton: It’s really good. I love that, and I mean just even knowing after you take the survey yourself – and I’m going to give you that URL one more time, it’s mindtimemaps.com/start/adtech – once you take the survey and you can say to someone, “You know, I’m really a past thinker and I’d appreciate you giving me a lot of data points, it would be helpful for me in making the decision” or “You know what, I really just want to know how you’re going to execute this program before I can be comfortable in being a yes”, you know. I mean just, it’s just fascinating, what’s the vision of where you see this all going before I can say I’d be part of it, you know. It’s like so simple, you know…
John Furey: Once you go to your audience, as you said, you know, CEO’s and entrepreneurs and founders of companies, “Hey guys, this is about leadership.”
Susan Bratton: Yes, definitely.
John Furey: This is about leadership, this is about speaking to your audience in the language that they get ‘cause it’s what they need because it’s their survival system, that simple.
Susan Bratton: So just to finish off the story today, I want you to, I appreciate the aspirational nature of the patent Commons and what you’re going to do, and I hope that some people will pick up on this idea. It’s a universal framework for understanding people and imagine if we can apply it to so many processes…
John Furey: Wherever there’s people.
Susan Bratton: Right, exactly. And you took it out in the middle of the Black Rock Desert at Burning Man. You created a mind shrine, is that right?
John Furey: That’s what we did.
Susan Bratton: Tell us about that.
John Furey: Yeah, you know what, Sean Phillips, one of my partners whose been working with me for many, many years, he’s a Burning Man junky, he’s been for many years. Long good track record, unbroken. So he invited me down in 2007. I hung out in the desert, I went “This is so cool. Hey, it’s a closed ecosystem. It’s a closed community. Wouldn’t it be neat if” – and of course Sean had already gotten it, he was way ahead of me. So 2008 we went out to Black Rock and we built a 12,000 square foot human computer that allowed people to essentially take the profile and then we asked them a series of polling questions, like survey questions about Black Rock, about community, etcetera, etcetera, about a country, about freedom, about the death penalty, all kinds of amazing questions, and because MindTime is very good at showing how your thinking style is driving your opinion what happened was as we posted the data in the Mind Shrine we started to show people how it was their thinking that drove how they responded to the survey questions and how you could understand why someone responded the way they did if you simply understood their thinking style. And it was one neat conversation I overheard, I’ll tell you very briefly. A couple came in through different entrances in the Mind Shrine, they had different thinking styles, they answered the surveys, they came into the middle, the walked around, they looked at the data, and then I heard their conversation go “You know, I guess there’s no way in the world that you can compete with your thinking when you know this. The only answer is to collaborate.” And they gave each other this big hug. And it was just this beautiful, beautiful moment…
Susan Bratton: That’s a total (unintelligible) moment, isn’t it?
John Furey: Oh yeah. So anyway, that was the Mind Shrine. It was a wild time. It was brilliant. And you know we dealt with 65 mile an hour winds and this massive computer shaking in the wind. Wild but so much fun. So much fun, and so good to see people embrace the concept and get it and without reading a book about it or without listening to me, they just got it.
Susan Bratton: I’m really looking forward to hearing what you think about the MindTime model and after you’ve taken the survey I’d love to get some feedback on whether you think this was something that you could apply to your business or if you want to learn more about the cognitive targeting, I’m sure Jason Burnham and the telepathy group would love to talk to you more about that. Post that, post your comments on my Facebook page. Just go to Facebook and search for DishyMix, all one word, you’ll find me. You’ll see that image you’re used to seeing of me. And if you want a copy of It’s All About Time: How People Work and Why Some Do It Better by John Furey, he’s going to give me a couple copies to give out to my fans, so go to the Facebook page at DishyMix and just post your interesting desire and I’ll pick a couple of you and mail you out a book. John, thanks so much for coming on the show and I’m looking forward to doing it all over again at AdTech New York.
John Furey: Yeah, me too Susan. It’s been a great pleasure. Thanks for having me.
Susan Bratton: Yeah, absolutely. It’s an amazing model and I feel fortunate to even know about it. Its actually been I would say a life altering concept that I’ve been able to integrate very easily into what I do to make my life a little easier when I’m talking to people, so thank you.
John Furey: Well that’s made my day. Thank you Susan.
Susan Bratton: It’s my pleasure. All right, well I’m your host, Susan Bratton. Thanks for listening to this episode of DishyMix. I hope you found it a pure pleasure. I hope you have a great day and I look forward to connecting with you next week. Take care.