Towards the Future —

Editor’s Letter : June 2017


Last month we were sitting around, having a casual conversation with Neal Brennan as part of an upcoming story. The comedian, director, and writer — best known for co-creating and co-writing The Chapelle Show — carries a unique blend of both humor and depth with his words. This was certainly apparent throughout Dave Chapelle’s hilarious skits many of us grew up with and his own stand-up routines, which later explored the comedians struggles with depression.


As our discussion gained momentum, we eventually got to talking about death and the notion that we care far too much about trivial things, when we all ultimately meet the same demise. It aligned with similar thoughts from Phil Rosenthal, the creator of Everybody Loves Raymond. Both casually dropped this piece of wisdom, with Neal saying it in a “it sounds morbid, but you know he’s 100% right” kind of way. Maybe such an unsettling truth uncovered something, I’m not sure, but it got us thinking about how the relationship between technology and legacy was going to change. In our quest to live—and leave—meaningfully, how could our advancements help us ensure that?


The thoughts that materialized after did so oddly enough, in a very sequential way. We all know aging is the natural order of Mother Nature, we all experience it. But pleasant or unpleasant as it is, we’re also postponing the effects and inevitable outcome of aging. This is happening through technological advancements. Yet with humans living longer and potentially enjoying more time as retirees, it still seems we’re neglecting to take advantage of our second — or more — chances to pass on some of the most important precursors to legacy:


Critical thought and knowledge.


Each passing moment, valuable knowledge and wisdom is lost even before the inevitable, through improper documentation or selective memory, through unwillingness to share or not providing the opportunities to do so, . You could never fully download one person’s experiences and transplant them into somebody else; not yet, anyways. But there are some things that need to be very clearly emphasized to guarantee the best results: Openness to sharing, to revel in each other’s goals and failures, and a willingness to accept the responsibility of pushing things forward. It’s not a dream, but what should be your reality.


If we don’t pass along the foundation and tools that enabled us to succeed, we’re essentially hitting ‘reset’ when we pass things over to the next generation. It’s this that often worries me. For the next generation to not set the bar above the previous, it should be considered nothing less than a catastrophic failure. Acquiring knowledge and culture is by no means an easy feat, but without it to serve as the roadmap for the next journey, you’re left treading blind and allowing legacy to erode.


We’ve been adding markers to our own roadmap and the picture is getting bigger and clearer. Most recently, the cadence of stories have improved and we’ve been releasing stories more consistently. We’re also actively fine-tuning our delivery in the recording booth to accommodate different needs, starting with our latest Building the Brand — Learning When to Bob and Weave. So, if you’re in the mood for an immersive audio experience or if you’re simply looking to put something on in the background, you’ve got diverse content to enjoy.


On a final note, we’ve toyed around with both on-site and newsletter Briefings and it looks like the latter has won out. This is thanks in no small part to those who have contributed their ideas and thoughts. It’s been invaluable having real world feedback on what works best.


Until next month,

Eugene Kan


Eugene talks about our recent strides with reinvigorating our creative processes and continuing to move forward, even as the challenges we sought to solve and the world around us continue to evolve.