A Day With Futurist David Zach

I just came back from CAM, ‘Conversation Among Masters’ and even though it was a dialogue among Master Coaches, we had in our midst a true master futurist, David Zach.

I just came back from CAM, ‘Conversation Among Masters’ and even though it was a dialogue among Master Coaches, we had in our midst a true master futurist, David Zach. Not only did he give us some amazing insights and how we can use them as leaders in the world of coaching, but took us on a journey between past, present and future so that we could meld the worlds together. In doing so, we can create something magical for the future.


He touched on topics such as “Progress is the ability to choose between change and tradition”. That sentence in itself got my mind flying in all directions. How does one choose between one or the other? Does one have to? Can we combine the two together to create something beyond our imagination?

He stated “Wealth is that which you value”. How much more profound does it get than that? As a coach, I would then dive into is it who you value more than the things you value? Talents, strengths, material wealth?

Let’s face it, coaches live in the future tense in how we ask questions and navigate through conversation.

David validated my perspective that new isn’t always better. Sometimes the old ways are better. He spoke about our ‘boxes’ or as some of us call them our ‘containers’ and states “Thinking outside the box is bad advice . . . because thinking outside the box should be to some purpose or point – and with the multiple point perspective notion, once applied to thinking adds an intellectual depth that can’t happen with just a one box perspective”. He encouraged us instead to ‘think into other boxes”, lending a richness and insight to our work and our worlds as we know them.

With some of my clients I use the analogy of living or existing in a room that is surrounded by windows with dark shades on them and when they have an ahha moment, the shades are lifted, letting the sun shine through, or, in our analogy, light and insight. This concept of thinking into other boxes or a “vision from each box” brings an image to mind of people walking in and out of these rooms, exploring and learning from the visit, expanding their horizons. By virtue of the title ‘Futurist’ alone, it lends an image, perception of possibility, incorporating choice, awareness and energy, giving me a sense of direction and movement. Aren’t those the descriptors of a leader?

If you have a chance to hear David speak, go! Don’t hesitate for a moment as you’ll look at life and your world in a very different way.


About the author

Donna Karlin CEC, Diplomate IABMCP and founder and principal of A Better Perspective® & The School of Shadow Coaching, has pioneered the specialized practice of Shadow Coaching® with global political, government, business and senior organizational leaders in the public and private sectors. Donna capitalizes on almost 30 years of experience in coaching, consulting and training to help clients and their organizations evolve into their level of excellence.