Photo by SpaceX on Unsplash

How I learned to stop worrying and love AI*

Open Invitation for a seat on a Human-Powered Rocket Ship — Game B Network Marketing Series [1]

When I heard Elon Musk’s final warning of the risk of a Super Digital Intelligence[2] growing exponentially out of human control, it was hard for me not to go into an anxiety loop.[3]

Since only a few of people have the financial power to build their own rocket ship and Elon is the only one (openly) talking about Mars as the best option for a few people to escape the consequences of AI taking over the Earth.

Is Elon playing Game B, or just trying to outrun the machines? If Game B is a hedge against the risks of Game A, does Elon’s Mars plan gets us to a Game B “omni-win”, non-rivalrous world or is it just a chance of a “do-over” when the machines run the table on humans?

Assuming Game A doesn’t end well and assuming Elon’s rocket is ready in time, are you planning to get seats for you and your family? Do you have any anxiety that there might not be a seat for you and your kin?

What if…I offered you a seat on my rocket ship?[4]

I am not sure Elon is playing Game B. Even if he is, anxiety is such a waste of (human) energy and disempowers so many of us. So while Elon has been working on his mission to Mars, I have been building my own rocket ship with my wife, Cara.

Our rocket ship is ready today and tested with a Game B orientation. While it is almost identical to the Game A version with its underlying purpose (human flourishing and the Earth thriving), it uses Game B math in its construction. My rocket ship is designed to eventually break the hold of Game A’s gravitational pull once it hits escape velocity.

My rocket ship has a seat for anyone with even a little curiosity about what the hell I am talking about. And since my rocket ship is built using Game B Math, there are an unlimited number of seats on my rocket ship and you just have to claim one. Cara and I named our rocket ship Team Flow.

Team Flow

Team Flow is my Game B network marketing team, and it has been built upon the basic principles of Game B Math [5].

In my last piece in this series, I have discussed that scale (flow) in a human network does not work like scale of a digital network, so we need a different math, a Human Math or what I am also calling Game B Math.

The basic or “first” principles of Human Math are — Power and Trust. As we learn how to work more effectively with Power and Trust, our capacity to generate and sustain team flow (scale) grows exponentially.

Team Flow is optimized collective action or collective action at scale. To optimize collective action, we need to first ask: Where is the complexity in the task(s) of network marketing?

Marketing is not complex task.

This is simply grassroots marketing. If you use and love the products, you share your experience using these great products with others. They can try the products risk-free. Although not complex, many people, including me, can make marketing more complicated that it needs to be.

All but one of the complex tasks in network marketing — scientific research, product creation, marketing collateral design/creation, technology, logistics, payment processing, finance, legal etc. — are performed by the company. These are resources provided to all participants to make the marketing task simple.

The complexity is in the Network.

Learn the human math of Power and Trust and you have everything you need to release the complexity [6] of network marketing and take a ride on this rocket ship as far as you want to take it.

Power and Trust

To wrap up this piece, I need to make a distinction between natural power dynamics and structural power dynamics. I am not going to get into a discussion of structural power, except to say structural power is real — we create it with our different human structures — economic, political, societal etc. Way above my pay grade, so we are not going there.[7]

For Game B network marketing purposes, we are focused natural power dynamics between human beings which can be expressed in this simple equation:

Power = Skills & Resources/Needs & Wants [8]

It is an overstatement that there is no structural power in network marketing, but the network marketing business model is the only business model I know that provides such an open framework which creates the scaling opportunities of a human network. With a Game B orientation and Game B product set, you have the ripe conditions for a game change — certainly in the individual lives of the participants and possibly in the disruptive nature of the Game B products that the network is marketing.

Why is there so little structural power in the network marketing business framework? A few obvious ones:

In network marketing, we work as a team [9], sorting out what skills and resources are needed for the current task (marketing) and filling in the skill and resource gaps among the team members. Trust builds as each individual member realizes there are always team members there to back them up. As trust deepens and expands, the team becomes more fluid and action becomes almost effortless — flow.

If you have been part of a team in any context, you likely know this feeling of team flow, even if it was fleeting. It just takes one taste of team flow to be transformative — you know what it possible. The energy, the clarity, the coherence of those moments — we catch a glimpse of how the impossible somehow becomes possible.

We all know this feeling — this is the feeling of being “in sync” with a friend, a spouse, a child and it is at its essence, Trust. So just imagine staying in the mix with your team long enough that getting and staying “in sync” become easier and easier. As the feeling of flow deepens, trust builds and action become almost effortless.

Since the marketing task is so simple, especially when the products are exceptional (which they have to be for the company to be successful), it is the teaming side of network marketing that is so transformative.

For the network marketing critic, network marketing is all about seeking a personal fortune at the expense of others. For the person actually in the network marketing arena [10], it is so much more. The greatest benefit of network marketing is personal transformation through participation with others.

After two years in the arena, I know this to be true. And it is what creates the conditions ripe for team flow.

Action Research — Open Invitation to Participate

I am going end this piece here and stop adding to this series, at least for a while. This series was never meant to go on indefinitely. I don’t like writing “about” Game B network marketing — my interest for many years has been to actually participate in team flow opportunities with other people who have “skin in the game” and who are interested in how we can organize work together so that humans can flourish and the planet can thrive. [11]

This series is really an invitation to anyone curious about participating in this team flow “action research” project with me and Cara. Someone has to be the first person the dance floor and as awkward as it feels for me, I am asking you to dance.

Cara and I have been playing the network marketing game intensely for almost two years for an amazing company with a game changing product suite and just reaching its tipping point. The next 5–10 years are going to be a rocket ship and it is going to be an amazing ride, whether you play it with a Game A or Game B orientation.

I am not here as a critic of Game A networking marketing. My company peers are exceptional people building exceptional teams. They are in “the arena” every day with open arms ready to welcome anyone that wants to join them. There are lots of spectators and critics, but the action and the fun is happening in the arena with us.

I am drawing a distinction between Game A and Game B network marketing for one purpose only. I believe that many more people can flourish in this game, if I work with a Game B orientation. We will not only transform our individual lives in participation with each other working with Power and Trust, we might just change the game on a larger scale.

Your seat on my rocket ship is there for the taking. This is not a big decision.

[Previous piece in this series]

* In the event this title doesn’t make sense, this is just a play on the satire Dr Strangelove. Please excuse my attempt at humor/satire.

[1] What is Game B? See the Game B Wiki.

[2] Elon Musk’s Final Warning about AI.

[3] Unwinding Anxiety With Dr. Jud Brewer, The Rich Roll Podcast, March 8, 2021

[4] “Don’t be an idiot…If you’re offered a seat on a rocket ship, don’t ask what seat. Just get on.” Sheryl Sandberg, 2012 Harvard Business School Graduation Speech

[5] A Source Code for Team Flow, Team Flow Potential is Now the Holy Grail for Agile Teams, Bonnitta Roy, Agile Sensemaking — Sensemaking for Agile Teams, Medium April 20, 2019

[6] Releasing Complexity, Bonnitta Roy Medium January 8, 2017.

[7,8] If you want to do a deep dive in the metaphysical primes of Power and Trust and exceptional work dealing with structural power, I recommend Bonnitta Roy’s body of work including Future of Work and Agile Sensemaking work on Medium.com.

[9] Network marketing is really a team of teams — small overlapping circles of trust. If you are curious and want to explore this further, jump on board our rocket ship.

[10] Although dated, the deep principles expressed in Theodore Roosevelt’s The Man in the Arena have inspired Cara and me in our many entrepreneur pursuits.

[11] If you are interested in team flow in your workplace, take a dive in Bonnitta Roy’s work - she is a Game B grand master.

Experimenting with Game B Network Marketing, Breaking Kayfabe, Open Participation, Team Flow…

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