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How to Evoke Foresight for the Future State of Your Company

by User Not Found | Jun 19, 2017

shutterstock_284040746When making business decisions one must always consider the future impact. If you focus only on the immediate state you’ll ultimately create a reactive culture that will force you to spend your days putting out fires. When faced with a problem take the opportunity to develop a solution that will improve your operations; make them run faster, more precise, more profitable. This mindset cannot be achieved alone. To successfully build an innovative mindset for your company you must shape the culture. George E.L. Barbee, one of the original Batten fellows at the University of Virginia Darden Graduate School of Business and former PwC partner, elaborates on two steps to help you do exactly that.

1. Build your “foresight network.”
Look for individuals on your team who think creatively as well as long-term. Start out with a small group and center discussions around where the company could go. When you feel it’s time to expand this circle, have the team invite one to two others they feel could contribute to the conversation. As your group grows you will have slowly made your foresight network. A network of people who can brainstorm and talk powerfully about the future state of the company.

2. Improve your imagining practice.
In meetings use the phrase “Imagine if…” to help move the conversation from internal, immediate concerns to a long-term, customer mindset. When you can start to focus on the customer and outward implications, your internal environment will shift to support the initiative.

Barbee provides further explanation and examples of each step in his article, “Two Simple Concepts for Thinking about the Future.”

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