The Future of Making
Understanding the Forces Shaping How and What We Create
Veteran innovator and technology pioneer Tom Wujec has spent three decades studying how teams create radical breakthroughs. Along the way, the former Chief Disruptor at Autodesk designed cutting-edge software that helps millions of people today create better products. Now a bestselling author and six-time TED Speaker, Wujec uses his design knowledge to help organizations solve complex problems and create massive positive impact.
As a former Autodesk Fellow and founding professor at Singularity University, Wujec has worked at the intersection of emerging technologies, business transformation, and creative collaboration. Throughout his decades-long career, he’s created digital tools to help engineer better cars, stronger buildings, more beautiful (and sustainable!) products, and even produce more engaging movies and video games. His visual effects application Maya won an Academy Award for its outstanding contribution to the film industry. Another innovation of his, the Sketchbook Pro, is used by 40 million designers and artists around the world today. Wujec is also the creator of the Wicked Problem Solving™ toolkit, a systems-based framework that elevates creative collaboration. These physical and digital tools have been chosen by the Project Management Institute as an essential method to implement lean, agile, and design thinking methods for its million members.
With such a sterling track record, it’s no wonder that Wujec is widely celebrated for his talks on innovation: why it matters, why it is a vital engine of economic growth, and how to foster it within any organization—from plucky startups to billion-dollar legacy companies. Working closely with Fortune 100s, he’s counted on to create innovation practices at all stages, from strategic planning to design and implementation.
Wujec is the author of six books, which have been translated into 16 languages; has spoken at TED six times; and delivered over 400 keynotes and workshops globally. His latest book, The Future of Making, brings his vision of disruptive innovation to global audiences, demonstrating how the entire process of imagining, iterating, constructing, manufacturing, distributing, and selling products has changed—unprecedentedly.
“Tom Wujec was inspirational. His speech was very insightful and a great way to kick things off.”LCI Congress
“Tom was outstanding. I loved the discussion on integration of design thinking, and his session was really exciting.”LCI Congress
“Tom Wujec was a fantastic speaker. His topic was refreshing in an industry that has a history of doing the same thing the same way. Innovation is key.”LCI Congress
“I just wanted to thank you for your time and for your very inspiring talk you gave at the Rencontres de génie on April 6. I’ve never seen such a nice presentation in 5 years of conference planning. So thank you so much for your contribution to our event. I received very positive comments and feedback from the participants concerning your talk; they were very impressed by the quality of your content.”Réseau des ingénieurs du Québec
“I hope your return trip was smoother than your trip to Grand Rapids. Thank you so much for persevering to get there. It meant everything to our JA Conference participants. They loved your presentation. And it was not only the Marshmallow Challenge, but the points you made in the talk were very pertinent for everyone. Many people made a point of telling me how terrific you are and that they are planning on using the challenge or the approach your described or both with their JA Area boards and staffs. Since we are beginning our new fiscal year, the timing is perfect for people to rethink the approach to the challenges of their business. We are posting the link to the Marshmallow Challenge with the other conference follow-up materials. Our production team will be formatting the video and we will get that to you. We also conduct a follow up evaluation of the conference and I expect I will see some quotable comments about your session. I’ll be sure to pass those along when we get them. With your hectic travel schedule I imagine you have had very little time to rest after the difficult journey to be at our conference. Please know that the extra effort made a big difference for all of us. Many, many thanks.”Junior Achievement USA
Every industry is becoming computable. As digital technologies automate more of what we do everyday, the nature of our work—and our livelihood—will undergo a radical transformation.
This keynote explains, provokes, and inspires. It clearly explains how three classes of technology—tools that capture, compute, and create—are propelling the evolution of companies. It provokes by shining a light on the fast approaching future, illustrating how the idea of value is unfolding in unexpected ways. And it inspires, showing how individuals, leaders, teams, and organizations can take advantage of emerging digital tools to not just automate, but to augment their work, unleashing superpowers that scale impact and deepen fulfilment.
Wujec also shares first-hand stories of how manufacturing, construction, pharma, healthcare, education, and financial organization are reimagining work as they disrupt their industries.
The future of work has never been more relevant. As technology continues to accelerate, we all need to understand how to can take advantage of digital tools, rather than be replaced by them.
This immersive, high-energy, and visually rich workshop helps you map the future of your work by charting how digital tools change the nature of value and where your specific industry and skills fall into this largely uncharted new terrain. This workshop turns what can be complex and overwhelming about new tech into simple, clear, and manageable action.
Through collaborative brainstorming and value/technology mapping, you can survey the technologies that matter now, clarify their impact on your business, and discover how to dramatically augment—not automate—the talents that matter to you.
In this talk, chief disruptor Tom Wujec will illustrate the dramatic transformation Autodesk has made to the cloud—from delivering software products to providing comprehensive team-based service solutions. Being “Born in the Cloud” means much more than just off-loading applications to remote servers. Cloud computation creates fundamentally new value propositions, business models, and infrastructure solutions. It equips customers with new ways to do their work. With fascinating examples, Wujec shows how manufacturing, construction, pharmaceutical, finance, media, entertainment, and other industries are being upended in surprising and powerful ways by cloud computing—and what that means for sales.
Innovation speaker Tom Wujec’s “Marshmallow Challenge” is a design experiment that reveals surprising lessons about teamwork, collaboration, and project management. Tom’s experiment sounds simple enough: teams try to build the tallest freestanding structure they can out of 20 sticks of spaghetti, 1 yard of tape, 1 yard of string and a marshmallow. What makes it difficult, though, is the need for teams to organize, prototype and finally build the structure in the short time frame. The results are astounding—children tend to outperform MBA students, due to their ability to redesign on the fly rather than plan a rigid structure and execute, even if the structure is doomed for failure. Through his “Marshmallow Challenge,” which he has presented at TED, Wujec has helped countless groups learn the value of true collaboration. And unlike a lot of other teamwork exercises, it’s actually fun!