Getting people to think about the future is near impossible. People can only know what they know now, unless they are true early adopters or extreme “passionates” in a particular category or field. Yet the problem remains, how do we bring relevant people into the picture when we are ideating or creating the future of our business and how do we help them engage and unlock pathways for growth?
Workshopping the future of your brand or service
Ruby Future Worlds typically involves a one – two day workshop with three phases :
- Analysis of the situation/technology/consumer today and trends, new thinking in similar categories
- Visionary where future visions are built and developed by a task force which may include customers or consumers (or may not)
- Implementation phase where the visions are engineered into actions and horizon plans
The visionary section can include scenarios with a more developed version of the future formed by Ruby Cha Cha in collaboration with the client and prepared in advance.
Participants’ experiences and critiques of the scenarios will form the basis for future visions and action plans.
The overall aim is to gather knowledge about participants experiences and visions on the topic and any barriers that arose
The scenario workshop works with 25-30 participants and we recommend a combination of both client team members and select people from the broader community
How do we find the right people?
We need the help of creative and technical experts, enthusiasts for the future and those who will shake up thinking. Often the lovers or haters of a product or service can be the canary in the coal mine and we shouldn’t shy away from bringing in extreme consumers.
We need to choose or find PASSIONATE/EXTREME OR OUTLIER participants who can point out issues and problems, and current work arounds they may have.
True early adopters or promiscuous consumers can also be more relevant as they tend to have wider experiences and ability to let go of the past and embrace new ideas, products, brands and experiences.
We also need open minded people who can embrace raw ideas and run with the plan.
Most of all we need people with imaginations.
Benefits of Future Workshops
For a business or brand teams to realise their ambition and goals, the business needs to break away from today and spend some time thinking about the future.
Future World workshops can be helpful in integrating a citizen or consumer-led perspective into decision making which:
- Helps management overcome their own bias in relation to an emerging technology, an evolving consumer type or a changing regulatory environment to hypothesise future directions of their business or brand
- Empowers team members to take control of the direction their business needs to head
1.The first stage requires great input. We look to draw on trends reports, existing or commissioned market research, competitive intelligence, opinion pieces and other inputs that can provoke thought
2.Scenarios can then be developed using insights into the different possibilities from our audit to find behavioural or technological drivers of the future. These are not based predictions. Instead, we will create stories of four (or more) different possible futures, imagining how the world could look after 2030, in order to challenge assumptions and stimulate thinking about the present and implications for future.
3.We will use the final versions of the scenarios to formulate robust future plans, to promote reflection on your brand or business in all of this and provide greater confidence in our strategic thinking
4.The final stage is always about implementation and grounding our future based insights into action plans and goals for the business, with key watchouts or research, capability and financing considerations also covered.
Scenario planning is the process of predicting future scenarios that may affect your business, and gauging what they will do to your business. The process can help your leadership team be prepared for adversities that may come up.
This unique planning helps your business deal with future issues by laying plans ahead of time as to how to deal with them when they arise. Your leadership team can use the planning for future investments, and they can create contingency plans based on the scenarios.
What are the key factors in scenario planning? Scenario planning is a four-step process, and each step must be followed for a company to have a desirable outcome. Using a consultant to help you facilitate these planning sessions can bring positive results to your company.
- Predict the drivers that will affect your company — Use past drivers that have affected your company to make educated guesses as to which ones will pop up in the future.
- Understand how these drivers will impact your business — Will you take a hit at profit levels? Employee satisfaction? IT solutions? Understanding these points is crucial to having a contingency plan in place.
- Gauge the effects of your company’s scenarios — What are the best possible outcomes? The worst? This information can help you understand what your company will gain or lose from this scenario.
Test the outcomes — Testing these outcomes helps your company prepare for the worst possible situations, and get a plan in place to protect from these scenarios.
Your scenario planning should include people who understand your business and can point out ongoing issues. These are your day-to-day employees that are in the thick of things. You also need critical thinkers, who can look at each problem with an open mind and create future contingencies.
WANT TO KNOW MORE?
We work with you to develop the future of your brand or business and our goal is always to provide an actionable plan of attack for the business. Interested in finding out more? Give Ellen a call on +612 8094 6800 or email firstname.lastname@example.org