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Is now the time to hire a futurologist?

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Barnaby Parker change management, business transformation, Agile...

Accurately predicting the future is an important skill nowadays. It’s an art that is much more common than you think. As Peter Drucker said “the best way to predict the future is to create it”. So how do you do that? 

Companies which are leading the way might be lucky or they have a process for imagining the future or even building the future their way. Some have set up centres of excellence for global trend analysis like Sheryl Connelly, futurologist at Ford Motors. Others have leaders such as Elon Musk on the payroll. 

And then there are the rest…..  

Future gazing might already be on the CEO’s job spec but not very near the top.  

The drumbeat of change has undoubtedly risen a notch and there’s no time to head in the wrong direction. We’re being forced to plan into the unknown. The more we can know the better. 

In walks the futurologist. They don’t tend to come from a particular academic background. One I interviewed had a doctorate, another had worked in a market stall.  

What they do have in common is an experience in identifying consumer trends, developing consumer insights, developing and utilizing scenario planning in product development and strategic planning, anticipating shifts in consumer values, attitudes and behaviours. 

Will you be prepared to listen, be disrupted and step up the change? You’re not hiring a fall guy. Unwelcome feedback and new ideas can cause confrontation and defensiveness. You and your organisation will have to adjust but no one predicts that the future will be easy. 

Would you like some more insights? Get in touch with Barnaby Parker, Executive Chairman at Venquis.