There are two simple steps to make when thinking about your future, according to recent Strategy+Business article by George Barbee. These are building your “foresight network” and improving your “imagining practice.”
Building your Foresight Network
- Find people in your organization that think in a creative manner and standout in meetings. Take the time to get to know them, then start discussing the future of your company. Each conversation, ask them to invite likeminded people to build your foresight network. Strive for diversity.
- Barbee discusses how he did this with GE in the 90s when the company was looking to expand internationally. A group of like-minded executives discussed what they knew about expanding to other countries and who they knew that had done something similar. Within months of this conversation, GE was undertaking projects in China, Mexico, and India thanks to this foresight group.
Improve your imagining practice
- Throughout daily meetings, try to include the phrase “Imagine if…” which allows you to start thinking about the big picture in the midst of the current tasks. It can also take the focus away from the company and place it on the perspective of the customers, with a phrase as simple as “Imagine introducing yourself by the the customers you serve.”
Read more about these two essential concepts for thinking about the future.