I just wanted to drop a note to all who consider visiting this blog, those who have signed up for my email updates, I wish to convey a heart felt thank you. Today I am celebrating 12 years since suffering a heart attack, yep, Match 4th, 2001 I suffered a broken heart, and I still get to tell the story.

It was 6 years ago Feb 1st I chose to become self-employed, it was a difficult decision, but it was the right one in my humble opinion. My wife might tell you something different : )

I’m dedicating this day to my family, and to you the reader, to you the visitor, it is you I can’t wait to share with, speak to, and most of all, help you. I am grateful that you allow me to speak to you in the direct manner that I do, I do this because I have to, I care about you and your business more than my own.

I hope and pray you will continue to travel on this journey I’m on, it is an honour and privilege to have you with me, thank you from the deepest part of my heart.


Here is a scaled down version of my PowerPoint Presentation I made at the World Futurist Society Conference July 9th in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. I hope to have the audio of my talk in the next few weeks, stay tuned. The conference was great and I made many new friends, I would like to thank WFS for the opportunity to share, and for an awesome time, well done.

Next year the conference will be held in Toronto July 27th – 29th at the Sheraton Centre Toronto Hotel, register now!


There is much confusion on this model, so don’t make the mistake of taking it literally, you will miss the value of the model. In fact, the model is not the important part, it’s usefulness is to help you change the way you think about business in the future. I was asked what the top 3 points of the Open & Free Business Model were, and I found myself struggling to answer the question. Mostly because there are more than 3 important points, but what a great question. So I have worked through this a bit and now I’m sharing it with you.

I have said many times, this model is not about what we do, a task list or a bunch of action items, it’s about how we think, how we think about business in the next 3 – 5 years, and how it will impact our lives. Having said that, we still have the question of risk, and what level of risk each business can afford should things not go as planned. The Model is actually secondary to how we think or percieve business in the future. Because, if you don’t believe that technology and younger generations want something different than you are offering, it doesn’t matter what I and countless other’s are trying to prepare you for.

The customers of tomorrow want a few things they couldn’t get in the past, control, and businesses are hard pressed to ignore them now that the world is flat. The business world is being forced into a change it doesn’t really want or know how to do, and more importantly, they don’t want to lose control. Not being in control means KAOS, but that’s what consumers are looking for, and it’s where they are.

The Top 3 Points I list here may change from time to time, but the larger picture is that all businesses will need to be Social & Mobile, it’s as obvious as the nose on your face don’t you think? But this model requires a new way of thinking, a new way of how we view open & free, the mechanics or chronological steps are secondary to it’s success. It’s not a rigid plan, it flows, and it’s paying attention to it’s consumers, more importantly, it’s listening.

1.) Attention Is The New Currency. We will all pay with attention, we’ll share, we’ll talk about, and we more than ever today, want attention. Businesses have been clammering for attention since the beginning of time, but now, we the people are in control of who gets that attention. Corps can no longer tell us what’s what, we now have options, and it’s only the beginning. Give a positive experience that is well packaged, and you will have greased the path to getting attention.

2.) Seamless Paywalls, provide access first before demanding payment. People are exchanging ownership for rental or FREE, or what feels like free. Free is hard to compete with, so don’t. The lower the cost, and the easier you make it for a consumer to purchase will win. Someday soon we all will pay rent with FaceBook or Twitter Credits, we will make day-to-day purchases with them as well. It will get easier to pay, and we may never go to a bank again in the near future to make deposits.

3.) Create or provide more content / value than you consume. The best way to be found when the rest of the world arrives here online, is to have large amounts of data (content), useful data (content), people always come back to places they find useful. This data will need to be well tagged in order to be found in the future, if you can not be easily found, you will be ignored. That includes individuals and businesses. Content should be free and be allowed to freely distributed, afterall, you are trying to get attention.

That’s three points, but there are many others, like Growing Bigger Ears, but it’s not that important because the top 3 flow out a handful of other points. Remember, your customers are fickle, and younger generations are constantly regrouping on the fly, making it impossible to control them for any length of time. The Paradigm Shift is between the ears, it’s important to understand that you will have to unlearn what you think you know about business in the future. Oh, Two other points of interest, experience & packaging, give consumers those two as if they are one and see what happens. Check out what Nine Inch Nails did with those two together.

Giving Consumers More Control is paramount, If You Don’t, They will get it from someone else. Corporations and businesses at all levels will have to learn how to trust the people formerly known as consumers.

I’ll be sharing these points and many others on why the future of business will need to leverage the open & free business model, at the World Futurist Society Conference in Vancouver this Saturday morning at 8:30.

I hope you find this helpful, and I would love it if you left your thoughts in the comments area, have a great day!

I ask this question because I want to know, for two reasons:

1. How are you using it?

2. I want to share your story at the World Futurist Society Conference on July 9th.

I am looking for a success story using this model, I have given many examples for you to research and follow here on this blog, but I want your story. Send me an email that describes what you think is working and what is not, I also want to understand your view on the model.

I won’t be able to share all submissions, but I will pick one, it could be yours. Have your submission into me no later than July 3rd, and I will work your story into my presentation which will be unveiled July 9th at 8:30AM. I triple dog dare you to let me share what you are doing with The Open & Free Business Model. I look forward to hearing from you, send me your story here: owen@owengreaves.com

Remember, do not take the model literally, it’s not a skill set or a list of executables, it’s a new way of thinking, do you get it?

I can remember as a young boy, sitting in front of the radio and listening to The Shadow late at night. The story being told in these who done it’s was captivating, and yet frightening at the same time. I mean come on, murder to a young boy in the 1960’s was unheard of in most small towns in Northern British Columbia. It was like pretend death, not real right? There were other programs but The Shadow always had you shivering, hiding under the covers, and making sure the light was on. Just in case you had to run, you had to see where you were going.

Radio was and is still a powerful medium, I know, I spent 15 years doing it. The problem with Radio today though, they almost never tell a story, they just sell, sell, sell. In my previous post I talk about sharing, and it proves my point, sharing the story is much more captivating than trying to sell 100% of the time. Even listening to a Hockey Game live on the radio told a story, the story of the progress each team was making, the ebb & flow, the swing in momentum, the incredible save Cheevers made but you couldn’t see, the announcers had to be masters of telling that story to keep you listening. The same is true with your presence on your Blog or website, personal or business, the story will draw people in, it’s been proven time and again for hundreds if not thousands of years.

The story is the glue, it is the very thing that can act as a magnet to your product, service or information. Find your story and share it, but remember, the story must be true and authentic, not fiction. It’s the REAL part that makes people come back. Making your story real and authentic, makes you and your Blog useful, especially if it solves a problem or informs them. People always comeback to places they find useful, it’s human nature to stick with what and who they trust. So, is your story trust worthy, is it compelling, better yet, is it interesting?

Every business has a story to tell, I would love to hear the story of your business, and does it fit the future business model, the open & free business model. The future of your business depends on your story being shared. Because, when we want innovation, we must focus on open and free thinking, and the storytelling that accompanies it.