Anticipating change has become a regular occurrence for those serious about staying competitive in a rapidly changing global environment. Professor Don Sull from the London School of Business has emerged as one of the real thought leaders in helping organizations navigate through the turbulence and uncertainty. Sull describes the current corporate visibility as the "fog of the future" where all knowledge is "provisional". By this he means that the world has become sufficiently volatile and uncertain so that the paradigms we have used to guide our actions in the past are only provisionally valid to help us navigate this increasingly foggy future. Actually, Sull is very clear in saying "not only do we not know what the future holds ... we can't know what the future holds" and trying to predict too far can cause some seriously bad decisions. The key rests in increasing your organization's ability to sense and respond better and faster and creating cultures within organizations that excel in reliable execution. Click here to watch a video clip of Don Sull describing ... the fog of the future.
Scenario planning helps organizations develop the strategic agility required to gain advantage from changes in the business environment. Scenarios are tools that organizations can use to help them imagine and manage the future more effectively. The scenario process highlights the principal drivers of change and associated uncertainties facing organizations today and explores how they might play out in the future. The result is a set of stories that offer alternative views of what the future might look like.
The great strength of scenario planning is that it can be used to look at today's challenges from different perspectives. The process of identifying and examining how current factors and trends might play out in the future helps leaders focus on the likely impact of those trends on their own organization. Quite often, leaders find that the impacts are going to be bigger - or happen sooner - than they had previously realized.
Ultimately, organizations use scenario planning to help them anticipate, prepare for or manage change.
Click here for more information on how we can help your organization gain strategic agility through scenario planning.