INNOVATORS // Thomas Prantl, natural born Brand Futurist

As an adult, you wonder from time to time why you might have the profession printed on your actual name card. And, during that self-analysis, you inevitably return to your childhood – the most fertile period of any life.
The single biggest thing that has shaped who I am, and what I’m doing right now, is growing up in the wonderful valley of Innsbruck. Every morning for several years, I walked from my parents home, along the riverside trough the wonderful surrounding mountain scenery up to my school. At the time it didn’t feel monumental or specific tyrolean – it was my daily routine – but, looking back, that morning walks started something.
There was a massive expanse of peaks, glaciers and snow covered mountain tops at the horizon and, as a child with a vivid imagination, I’d envisage what might be out there behind the walls of  Nordkette and Berg Isel. I’d conjure up fantastical worlds; there where no boundaries, just endless possibilities. For example, I dream’t by the time Innsbruck city limits will reach the Patscherkofel hilltop. And we all will life in a world with a better view, brighter sky and ski lift to school service for everyone. Fortunately this early adaption of megatrend urbanisation did not happen.
But as a grown up the mountain views changed every day, depending on the weather, everything is going on steady and in comprehensible patterns: winter, spring, summer, fall – you can really count on that. So the scenary was like a moving picture fulfilling my own anticipation of how things happen in the world. That mountain view helped me form my imagination, defined my powers of observation and made me slightly fearless of the unknown. Very helpful for a young guy when I hit NewYork or Ginzha District for the first time later in my career.
Part of my Job now, as an innovator and branding expert, is to come up with a vision, and take people with me into a different place, same position - but prospective. To do that, it’s important to keep things free and simple, and not over complicate situations. I think in present times, if we want to meet the expectations of future demands, we need to hold on to that childlike state where we know less, but dream more.

Posted by matthias ocklenburg on 09.01.2012 - 04:41