PROFILE

Ian Percy

President, The Ian Percy Corporation

Ian Percy is a Possibilities Expert and the founder of The Infinite Possibilities Initiative, a process for applying principles from quantum and energetic science for exponentially higher levels of innovation and profitability. An organizational psychologist, he is one of the most acclaimed business and inspirational speakers in the world. Successful Meetings magazine declared him “One of the top 21 speakers for the 21st century” and he is one of only three speakers inducted into both the US and Canadian Speaker Halls of Fame. Ian’s remarkable ability to blend depth of insight with inspiration is sought after by a wide variety of corporations and associations.

Recently he’s developed a process that engages entire cities in ‘possibility thinking’ and in understanding that they control the collective ‘energy’ that attracts or repels new residents, investments and businesses. Many organizations are stuck in 16th century Newtonian thinking, he insists, and that makes them almost irrelevant to a 21st century marketplace. For starters, he says, we need to move far beyond ‘problem solving’ to ‘seeing possibilities’. When leaders focus on the latter, problems resolve themselves and a new and prosperous reality begins to emerge. That is the secret to building a culture of innovation!

In addition Ian is a co-founder of Verdant Technologies LLC, a company that brings advanced technologies to many sectors like sustainable energy, waste management, agriculture, water science, medical devices, electric vehicles. etc.

He has authored seven highly respected books including the breakthrough book on leadership titled: Going Deep and The Profitable Power of Purpose which challenges traditional thinking about corporate vision. His latest ebook is Make Your Life a Masterpiece, a modern English translation of James Allen’s 1902 classic As a Man Thinketh.

Ian has both Canadian and US citizenships and lives in Scottsdale, Arizona.

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  • Posted on: 09/06/2019

    Is virtual training better than real-life role-playing?

    You make a strong and good point, Georganne. There's something irreplaceable about being physically in the middle of the blood, sweat and tears of an intense situation. What I was trying to point out is that there is a big difference between actually having an intense experience like getting fired, and pretending to have an intense experience which is itself a form of "virtuality." The pretenders typically display unrealistic behavior because, well, they're pretenders. I was thinking that perhaps there could be something close to what you describe in a virtual format. As an old weathered trainer, the other problem with VR is that it's not usually a group experience. Nothing is more boring than watching someone in VR goggles.
  • Posted on: 09/06/2019

    Starbucks developing new store dedicated to pickup and delivery orders

    Let's see what happens the first time someone has to stop suddenly coming out of the drive-thru and dumps the hot coffee in their lap. In Googling what happened to that famous McDonald's case I typed "Woman sues" and up it came. That was in 1992 and it is still talked about! She was awarded $3 million and got $640,000. Starbucks has already lost one "hot coffee" lawsuit for $100,000.
  • Posted on: 09/06/2019

    Is virtual training better than real-life role-playing?

    As one who started his career doing management and staff training, I can unequivocally say that virtual role-playing will be light years ahead of physical role-playing. In fact virtual role playing, assuming it is created well, is actually MORE real than real role-playing. Here's why. There is usually a problem role and a helping or interventionist role. I learned from my first experience that it is impossible to "win" as the good guy/gal. The problem role-player knows it is their job to thwart the helper in every way possible to the point of acting mentally deranged. So much of role playing is pretty well pointless though I did that sort of thing for years. It's a game trainers play. A virtual tool in which a problematic role that is natural, with realistic responses to intervention, will be SO much more effective. And yes, it will save a ton of money and even more time.
  • Posted on: 09/04/2019

    Will Walmart’s customers accept its rejection of the firearms ‘status quo’?

    Hey Art, I searched around for your "7 percent of guns used in a crime purchased legally" figure. Not questioning that at all, but 10 minutes of searching showed me how confused gun data collection is. Seemed like no one had the same figures. As I understand it, we're prevented from any serious gun use research thanks to the NRA. Makes me wonder, if the "more guns" cause is so good for the nation, why on earth would they not want to justify that conclusion with some accurate and insightful research? I appreciate your contribution today.
  • Posted on: 09/04/2019

    Will Walmart’s customers accept its rejection of the firearms ‘status quo’?

    I have no need to go to Walmart, but I will today - there must be something there I need. I applaud them and will support them however I can. I don't see this as "rejecting" anything, I see it as "accepting" common sense, safety, concern for their customers, their selfless thinking and so on. I've lived happily in AZ for 22 years having moved here from Toronto and taken up citizenship. Can't imagine living anywhere else. But to be honest, I still don't understand this gun thing. As in most other countries, there are lots of guns in Canada but no one talks about it. Here it's talked about more than the weather. What drives me crazy is when people talk about having guns as a "God-given right." I'm pretty confident that God had nothing to do with it and has left us to our ways. It's called "free will" and we live with the outcome of our decisions. Walmart made a great decision, God bless them.
  • Posted on: 08/28/2019

    Innovation: Are retailers trying to do too much?

    You can solve problems or you can see possibilities. Those are quite different intentions. Another way to put it is you can fix yesterday or you can create your future. Truth is we have all been conditioned and rewarded to solve problems. That's kind of like taking classes on how to tread water. What we're slowly realizing is that doing so might keep you solvent but not differentiated. Far too much time is spent throwing spaghetti at the wall when the only question retailers should be asking is, "what is possible?" And please stop looking for "best practice!" You'll only find "current practice" because the highest possibilities are still out in the ether. It's not about doing too much, it's about doing it too wrong. There are three varieties of innovations or possibilities. Adjacent ones refer to the minor tweaks in what you currently do. This is what you get from an employee suggestion program because it's safe. Non-adjacent ones show the courage to stretch a little and challenge the status quo. Usually this will get you a pat on the head and a hint that you should get back to doing your basic job. Transformational innovations or possibilities are out on the fringe, the game-changers, a redefinition of retail. Unless it comes from the CEO or owner, these are not usually tolerated resulting in the transformational thinker leaving and starting her/his own business. This outer ring is where we find da Vinci, Curie, Einstein, Lamarr, Walton, Jobs and Bezos. You and I can be there too but we need to learn to see and think differently and stay out of board rooms. As we all know, no one has ever had a good idea in the middle of a meeting.
  • Posted on: 08/22/2019

    Groupon hopes its rewards program engenders more loyalty

    " Loyalty is a matter of both principle and sentiment, conduct and feeling; it implies enthusiasm and devotion" [Century Dictionary, 1897] Nothing in there about 20 percent discounts. I've challenged the very premise of "loyalty" far too many times in these columns. There are some brutal realities evident in this description of Groupon. "Groupon, the beleaguered daily deals website..." wants to "...convert these mobile and online users into more valuable purchasers.” It's hard to expect loyalty to a beleaguered entity. The Toronto Maple Leafs are pretty well the only entity that's been successful at it. In the same way trust is irrelevant in the absence of risk, loyalty is irrelevant in the presence of financial incentive. From a cusomer perspective it is opportunism at best. From the retail perspective if you can offer opportunism and still make money while doing so...have at it. Just don't be deceived and think it's loyalty.
  • Posted on: 08/20/2019

    Can local artists help Target create community support?

    First, I love seeing quality art anywhere and any time. Especially when I see brilliant work by youngsters as I've seen in a couple of airports. I will almost miss a flight for that! That said, Target (or any sponsor) needs to be very clear on why it is doing this. If it's intended to increase traffic and sales for itself, it will undoubtedly fail. Art Suriano is right about that. If it's unselfishly about acknowledging and benefiting the surrounding community, then all is good. That good will come back to the store on its own accord; it's a karma thing. One thing that is often overlooked with similar intiatives is the failure to recognize the creator of the creation. Hopefully there will be a plaque with the name and picture of the artist and a bio paragraph. That is just one way to ensure the energy and light of the initiaitve is reflected out into the community. It's not about Target, it's about the community. So far it looks like Target gets it. Bravo.
  • Posted on: 08/15/2019

    Will thredUP make Macy’s more thrifty?

    Didn't know that. Now that makes this a much more interesting initiative. Key is to have each component of that pipeline do its work superbly. A great possibility is emerging from the retail mist. Thanks Jeff.
  • Posted on: 08/15/2019

    Will thredUP make Macy’s more thrifty?

    You've hit upon a key insight Jeff. Just what is "Macy's?" It's okay, IMO, to change its agreement with its customers but that has to be done strategically, clearly and in a way that customers prefer the new agreement or promise. As I've tried to say this morning, it's dangerous to play or "tinker" with a long established brand promise.
  • Posted on: 08/15/2019

    Will thredUP make Macy’s more thrifty?

    The one word that should be highlighted in this story was spoken by CEO Jeff Gennette. That word is "tinkering." It's rather refreshing to hear such honesty. Some days I get the impression that the entire retail world is in this "tinkering" mode. It's not a strategy per se, it's a hope that there's a silver bullet out there somewhere so let's try anything and everything until something sticks. This just might pay off so part of me admires the "tinker" though blending the new and used/old is not really an innovative idea. Car dealers sell new and used cars, bakeries have "day old" shelves, and golf stores have new and used equipment, all with considerable success. My word of caution, however, is that Macy's should not merely tinker with this idea. Either do it with energy, zeal and commitment, or don't! The universe seems to evaluate just how much we actually want a new reality before it begins to move in our direction. Five-hundred square feet of used clothes says that Macy's isn't all that serious about it. As the great retailer Yoda said: "Do or do not. There is no tinker."
  • Posted on: 08/13/2019

    Is Nike’s new subscription program for kids a parent’s best friend?

    Thank you Michael. You spoke the truth much more graciously than I.
  • Posted on: 08/13/2019

    Is Nike’s new subscription program for kids a parent’s best friend?

    Twelve pairs of sneakers a year? A new pair every month? The cheapest option is spending $240 a year on runners? Seriously? Has parenting become driven by "what kids want?" And shopping for what your kids NEED is a "friction point?" I guess "hand-me-downs" are a thing of the past too, are they? Does Nike really think this will generate brand loyalty? If the kids at school are suddenly into a different brand of runner with a horse logo and "Old Town Road" across the toes, they will kiss Nike goodbye. These days kids are more fickle about fashion than adults. Heck, a "brand" meant "which one was cheapest" when I was a kid. I'm sorry, I guess one never gets past how they themselves were raised. We all love our kids more than life and enjoy getting them special things they want. But there are values and lessons in old-fashioned parenting that I'd hate to see totally abandoned. Like gratitude. Like actual communication between parent and child. Shopping with your kids can deepen your understanding about what are kids are going through and what is important to them. I know that sounds silly if you just experienced a temper tantrum with your six year old, but think about it. To me it's like a pre-packaged food subscription so the family doesn't experience the "friction" of preparing the family dinner together. This is yet one more example of self-centered and greedy marketing disguised as being for OUR good. Total nonsense.
  • Posted on: 08/08/2019

    Has the starting point of customer journeys moved?

    I just got off a call talking to a media company about a new project of mine when this Today on RetailWire showed up with Nikki's excellent piece on the "customer journey." To be honest, I'm a little apprehensive that I'll do poorly at explaining the thoughts that came to me bringing the two experiences together. I'll try. For obvious reasons, retail's objective is to understand what a customer goes through mentally, emotionally, spiritually and physically beginning with what factors drive the creation of a thought right up to the point where he or she buys something. But, might this be as much about the retailer's journey as the customer's? Perhaps more? Can one appreciate my journey if they don't understand their own? Seems to me that a good portion of the retail world is increasingly unsure about what road to follow. In other words ... lost. My phone call with the media people, in essence, was about how to reverse the roles, that is how to help someone bring me something they believe is of value and worthy of consideration and perhaps influence rather than try to sell them something. The "journey" then, is about insightfully understanding and opening up a path for giving instead of getting. You've seen the bumper sticker about rescue pets: "Who rescued who?" Is there any room here for seeing customers in a different way? Might we make "the journey" more of a two-way street?
  • Posted on: 08/02/2019

    Gen Z gets creative online

    Exactly, Ryan. You say, "It’s easy for folks to confuse the sophistication of the tools with the skills of the toolmakers." I'd add: ... and with the creativity and skills of the tool users.

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