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VIP Corner: Eric Schmidt asks, “How long is the future?”

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SmartBrief is partnering with Big Think to create a weekly video spotlight in SmartBrief on Leadership called “VIP Corner: Video Insights Powered by Big Think.” This week, we’re featuring Google Executive Chairman Eric Schmidt.

Based on their professions, people have different answers to the question “How long is the future?” said Eric Schmidt, Google’s executive chairman. Politicians, for example, see the future in increments of a few years, while those who have long-term equity in a company see the future differently.

“And you can figure out what their answer is by how they take their money,” said Schmidt, who served as Google’s CEO between 2001 and 2011. For example, one can get a better understanding of the airline industry by examining the financial rewards it offers.

“That’s feedback back to you of how their systems work. I’m not saying it’s bad; I’m saying it helps you understand,” he said.

Big Think is a forum in which top experts explore big ideas and core skills defining the 21st century. Learn more from its editors, fellows and guest speakers.

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