Interview with Brian J Smyth, Managing Director and Global Innovation Lead, Communications, Media and Technology at Accenture.
We need a verb of the adjective undeterred. A word describing “the act of not being deterred or the process of persisting without discouragement.”
May I suggest the word: Undeterring.
It is not an established word in standard English dictionaries or usage, but it should be.
We could use it to describe a team of innovators, like this: “The team’s undeterring spirit led to a breakthrough, ultimately making the innovation a success.”
Undeterring spirits are what people who are trying to push new innovations and technologies need every day.
Why do we need the verb? Because a verb is a word that conveys an “action, an occurrence, or a state of being” and we need more people to take action to make new technologies and innovations come true. We need to encourage the act and that state of being.
A person who has an undeterring spirit is Brian J Smyth, Managing Director and Global Innovation Lead, Communications, Media and Technology at Accenture. Part of his job working in The Dock, Accenture’s global R&D hub in Dublin, Ireland is trying to get companies to understand, get interested in, try out, and adapt new technologies such as AI, VR and AR, and he constantly runs into people who are skeptical, negative, uninterested or uninformed about the potential of new tech. He, of course, also runs into loads of people who are interested, passionate and curious, but for those people you do not need the undeterring spirit 😉
His job is to turn around the skeptics.
To get them to see the opportunities.
To do that you need to be undeterring.
Brian shared how, in order to get people onboard, you need to:
a) Make them see some value.
Brian: “You have to understand that people have so many current problems and tasks on their to-do-list that it’s very hard to get them to put potential new solutions on top of all those tasks. You need to show them that it’s worth it.
b) Give them the confidence to interact with the new technology
Brian: “The unknown can scare people. Have a grand vision, but when showing a new technology start with showing solutions that are close to existing products and services that people know and understand. If the leap is too big, people will fail to make that leap.”
And then realise that innovation is never a straight line. Keep pushing, keep evaluating what is working and tweak what is not. It’s hard to get others to see what you see.
Brian said that he is “attracted to the greyness that is the unknown”. He is energized by “the challenge of opening the eyes of people to the winds of opportunity.” The skepticism fuels him.
But Brian is not a rabid contrarian. He wants to help people. Or in his words: “I want to help uncover the clouds that stop people from seeing the future and their important role in shaping it.”
He has: An undeterring spirit.
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