Futurist speakers often get the privilege to play trendspotter behind closed doors, helping leading businesses spot and identify the latest consumer, technology, and market trends as they emerge. But it’s rare that we get the chance to do so in a public setting – let alone reveal a little bit of just how it is that we go about performing this work. So we’re tremendously grateful to our friends at Xerox and RealBusiness, who recently asked us to explain how leading organizations and brands can go about the business of seeing the future as it emerges – and how to use the insight they’ve gained to create lasting, positive change or create competitive advantage for their enterprise.
In the interview, titled “Trendspotting 101: Predicting the Future,” which you can see at this link, we explain how leaders at every level, including both junior and senior management, can tell what’s coming next in business, and prepare themselves to greet the future as it emerges. Ironically, as many futurist speakers point out, the hard part here really isn’t predicting what’s coming next, so much as it is predicting what else is poised to arrive at the same time, how all are liable to be greeted by audiences, and – based on these and other factors – just which of the multitude of options emerging at any given moment has lasting staying power. Put simply, many future trends are always taking shape in business. The key is knowing which to hitch your wagon to – and, more importantly, which others you should be hitching wagons to as well, just in case an unexpected fork in the road is suddenly encountered.
A quick, but informative read, I highly recommend having a look at the clip. You may be surprised to learn just how easy it is to tell where to place your bets on closer examination. Hint: You’ll notice we used the word bets (plural). Even for us futurist types, there’s no such thing as certainty in business – learn to zero in opportunities, and make more educated wagers though, and – as the article points out – you’ll notice that a well-balanced innovation portfolio is critical.