Peter Guber on Competing for the Future…Now


Peter Guber is one of the most successful yet grounded business leaders I have a pleasure of calling a friend. There are many sides to Peter and chances are you may know him from one of his many distinguished ventures,

- Chairman and CEO of the multimedia Mandalay Entertainment Group
- Past president of Sony Pictures
- Producer of popular motion pictures including Batman, Rain Man, The Color Purple, just to name a few
- Co-owner of the Los Angeles Dodgers and the Golden State Warriors
- Author of the best-selling book Tell to Win
- Professor at UCLA School of Business

In this special edition of Revolution, hosted by the Pivot Conference, Peter and I sat down to discuss his experience in taking traditional business models and modernizing them for the connected economy. Most notably however, Peter also explores the differences in competing for the present versus competing for the future. When you compete for the future, you are simultaneously earning market share through customer relationships while also chasing a vision…a vision that leads you to new horizons beyond the ordinary. Competing for the moment tends to produce a culture of management where scale, efficiencies and optimization reign supreme. The difference is that competing for the future tends to result in a culture of leadership and innovation.

History shows that businesses that focus on a higher purpose outperform those that dwell on the bottom line. Perhaps it’s time for all of us to compete for the future…today.

I think you’ll find Peter’s thoughts refreshing…I also found them inspiring.

Use code “BrianNetwork” to save 30% when you register to attend Pivot in New York.

Shot on location at The Scratch Bar in Beverly Hills.


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  • jon_mitchell_jackson

    Great discussion. Competing for the future is what it’s all about. Can’t wait to connect my daughter at UCLA (2nd year) with Mr. Guber!

  • KirstyJBand

    Very inspiring interview and motivation to keep pushing forward. Key outtake for me ‘if you’re aiming for their wallet you’re in trouble…aim for their hearts’. There are so many examples out there of successful businesses who focus on this at their heart, but for the majority the focus always gets pushed towards the bottom line especially in those large multi-nationals. Would love to hear more on how to tackle this within an organisation and help to turn the viewpoint and vision around, or at least to work within the constraints to ensure the work we personally achieve can stand true to this.

    • briansolis

      Great comment. Thanks for watching!

  • Brie Dorsey

    Great interview! As someone who got their bachelors degree just in time to be behind the digital boom and is trying desperately to catch up, I think that what Peter Gruber is saying about uncertainty being the key to success is very true these days. The things that seemed so certain in those textbooks in college that pointed us to marketing and business in an analog world, just don’t seem to work in the digital world, so you have to be willing to embrace the unknown.

  • Matthew White

    Yes! I believe focusing on the higher purpose is far more important – and rewarding – than just the bottom line . . . as long as you’re able to pay those bills, of course.

    • briansolis

      Of course!

  • JeremySeoChicago

    Good stuff! Reminds us to always keep up the best we can with the times, otherwise you’ll be left in the dust. Guber hits the nail on the head when he mentions competing specifically for the future.

  • Sean Hickinbotham

    It’s nearly impossible to find educated people on this topic, but you sound like you know what you’re talking about! Thanks

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Brian Solis is a digital analyst, anthropologist, and also a futurist. In his work at Altimeter Group, Solis studies the effects of disruptive technology on business and society. He is an avid keynote speaker and award-winning author who is globally recognized as one of the most prominent thought leaders in digital transformation.

His most recent book, What's the Future of Business: Changing the Way Businesses Create Experiences (WTF), explores the landscape of connected consumerism and how business and customer relationships unfold in four distinct moments of truth. His previous book, The End of Business as Usual, explores the emergence of Generation-C, a new generation of customers and employees and how businesses must adapt to reach them. In 2009, Solis released Engage, which is regarded as the industry reference guide for businesses to market, sell and service in the social web.

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