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Most of us believe that tomorrow will be like today. However, the world is changing quicker than we realize. Tomorrow is not exactly like this moment. It will be different!
Future scanning is necessary. Without preparation you can't take advantage of trends, or mitigate their impacts.
In the hunt for better scanning I often get asked where to turn. I tell leaders to look inside their organizations - employees are an excellent source of possible trends. Many of your staff are reading in their fields, attending conferences, talking to colleagues and therefore, scanning for you already.
Why don't leaders ask employees for input? First, they don't think of it. Leaders forget that employees are a source of future scanning information. If you don't have different levels at the planning table, they are often forgotten.
Second, some leaders believe that if it isn't expensive it isn't worth it. Your employees should not be the only source of possible trends, and they will give you some forward thinking trends that the expensive consulting companies won't think of.
When gathering trends from employees, use a tool which causes them to be creative about generating trends. I recommend our SKEPTIC model.
S - Socio-demographics (people & societal trends)
K - Competition (who is competing for the same resources or where else can people get similar products & services)
E - Economy/Ecology (global & local markets, water/air/land)
P - Politics/Regulatory (legal, governmental trends)
T - Technical (technology changes)
I - Industry/Suppliers (what trends are happening in your industry & amongst your suppliers)
C - Customer/Citizen (possible future changes in the people who use your product or service)
Employees can be an enthusiastic and informative addition to your future scanning. If you want to know more about ways to get employees involved contact me
Good luck with your scanning!
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