Andy Zmolek: It’s possible to measure creativity.
For ecosystems development director at YLD, Andy Zmolek, fractal patterns are central to our existence in the natural world. His previous experience with Android at Google and LG Electronics have enabled him to ramp up a significant background in developing technology ecosystems and an effective fractal model for value network orchestration. Through his extensive research in the fields of psychology, neuroscience, and technology, he expertly guides clients towards a large-scale digital transformation by observing organizations’ fundamental fractal patterns.
Andy systematically nudges organizations towards identifying their missing pieces, their unique cultures, and their own set of recurring fractal patterns that define who they are. Through facilitation and Wardley mapping, they’re able to find their organizational structure and the necessary components and innovations for serving their customers or users. Essentially, organizations must recognize which innovations to implement, how to break harmful patterns, and learn to weave new patterns into their business.
“I think everybody has their genius,” Andy told Sonophilia. “Mine is being able to understand those fractal patterns and then apply fractal programming. That helps create not just minor adjustments, but significant adjustments to culture. You can think of this as kind of an ideological programming … Fractal programming is about behavior modeling… Every organization has their own way of framing the world. If you want to make lasting change, you first [must] be able to go in and help them re-frame. Once that happens, real change can happen.”
Andy is driven by his desire to enable partners to take a journey and provide a journey alignment by removing as much friction as possible. This is what his research, and by default, his entire career, has been grounded in. As Andy explained, humans thrive on emotion, and this inherently determines our actions.
“You can’t get anyone to do anything without emotion,” he said. “We make a decision for emotional reasons, and then we rationalize… That’s the only place where any kind of logic comes into it. You’ve got to think of consciousness as fundamentally being this core infinite loop. I’ve got emotion, action, emotion, action, emotion, action. We’re just pattern matching machines… We’re just an analog computer. We’re looking around, trying to lock on to legible fractal patterns, because the thing that humans cannot tolerate is chaos.”
Emotions can attract us or repel us from situations, and this is a central theme in Andy’s exploration of fractal patterns. Our fractal programming can’t be altered directly, but we can choose which emotion we iterate. This is what Andy refers to as a “life hack,” which allows him to shut down certain anxiety loops that tend to dominate many of our lives.
“At any given point,” he notes, “you’ve got thousands of opportunities to then make conscious choices to amplify a positive emotion like joy or trust or enthusiasm. Whatever you want more of, make a choice that has emotional roots that are connected to the emotion you want to amplify. The funny thing about this is it’s just simple framing choices, right?… Reality is infinitely complex. The model in your head is of necessity simpler than the complexity of reality… That’s where innovation comes from. To be able to get in there and work with it, it requires increasing amounts of creativity and critical thinking.”
As a long-term member of the Sonophilia Network, Andy said he’d always resonated with the idea that institutions, such as nations and corporations, are artificial life forms. They have their own programming and DNA, their own ecosystems and fractal patterns. Some have even reproduced to become incredibly large and influential. In order to be more closely attuned to higher frequency thinking, conceptualization, game-play, and subtlety, creativity and critical thinking are key.
“I’m starting to believe,” Andy added, “it’s possible to measure creativity and critical thinking. Now, this idea sounds ridiculous on the surface, because… they’re invisible ether effects, right?… In order to be able to compute a world that we can interact with, that allows us to zoom in, zoom out, change scale and see where all these different, infinite fractal patterns are interacting, you’d need computing power that itself could deal with those infinities.”
Andy is an active member on the task force for Sonophilia’s new project Matters.Global, which aims to ‘Solve the Problem of Problem-Solving.’ This envelopes his passion for mapping out fractal patterns and making connections. The project allows him to hone in on effectively framing unsolved problems, enabling people to collaborate on global-scale problems, share information and data, and create a graph of problem relatedness.
“Creativity is the energy you put into leaving the legible world that you’re in,” Andy concluded, “and exploring the less legible, uncharted, poorly explored realm that likely contain the framing, the solution you need to make progress and go forward. The combination of creativity and critical thinking, when applied to any problem stage, will allow you to determine where to explore, how to explore it, and how to move forward in a way that progresses and aligns the journey of those that want to do so.”