Our Journey Forward: Thoughts from Futurists


I had the great fortune of working with three very accomplished futurists in the production of our upcoming course titled:  Reimagining the Future – A Journey through the Looking Glass. SAP’s Susan Galer interviewed these futurists in support of the course launch on May 23rd. The SAP Post provides a glimpse into the course, with thoughts from futurists and industry leaders. Here are several quotes from the post.

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What’s Next for Your Business? Ask A Futurist!


I will be participating in another radio show brought to you by Coffee Break with Game Changers. The show is hosted by Bonnie D. Graham tomorrow 7-12-16 at 10:00 am EST. You can listen live or at your convenience after the show.

Episode Description

The buzz: Need X-ray vision? Business and social cultures are changing faster and in more ways than we ever imagined! Take Brexit, where an economic, political and social ripple disrupted the world after a majority vote by UK citizens to leave the EU. Compounding this, new technology innovations – i.e., virtual reality systems, artificial intelligence, self-driving cars, the Internet of Things – are transforming every company, while new business models are transforming entire industries. How can you see “around corners” and be proactive? Ask a Futurist for the secrets behind their long-range lens. The experts speak. Frank Diana, TCS: “The future started yesterday and we’re already late” (John Legend). Gray Scott, Futurist: “It is better to err on the side of daring than the side of caution” (Alvin Toffler), Kai Goerlich, SAP: “The future belongs to those who see possibilities before they become obvious.” (Oscar Wilde) Join us for What’s Next for Your Business? Ask A Futurist!

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Empowerment Economy


On a recent Radio Program focused on the future of business, Gray Scott introduced another future scenario. He called it the empowerment economy, and he described it this way:

He sees the past in three stages: 1) companies were in the business of providing supplies and core objects 2) we moved away from that to a convenience economy where we make it convenient for you to get what you need 3) now we are moving to the empowerment economy. It’s no longer about providing an object or convenience; it’s about giving them the power to supply themselves. Gray does not believe corporations understand this. Google and Uber get this circular idea of empowering people, which he believes is the future of business. The companies that embrace this empowerment economy are the companies that are going to succeed.

Those are his words direct from the radio program referenced above. So we add empowerment economy to the growing list of future scenarios. Thanks Gray.

emerging-future

Emerging Paradigms and the Future of Business


I had the pleasure of joining SAP’s Coffee Break with Game Changers Radio Show on August 5th.  This was my third appearance on the show, and I was joined by Futurist Gray Scott and SAP Global Innovation Evangelist Timo Elliott. The show titled “Emerging Paradigms and the Future of Business” was part two of a series that was expertly moderated by Bonnie D. Graham. Part one of the series was a discussion on Decentralization.

The show abstract: The pace and scale of change is hitting unprecedented levels. This presents unique challenges for the future of business. We’re seeing new and emerging paradigms, exciting innovations in energy, challenges due to resource scarcity, big implications for the climate and environment, an increasing blurring of physical and digital boundaries, growing business decentralization, exponential progression, and many more global drivers – all contributing to an uncertain future. Futurists worldwide, including our panellists, are examining these factors and assessing their potential business impact. Some of the critical questions to address:

  • What factors will shape our future?
  • What new leadership skills will be needed?
  • How will leaders deal with challenges and implications outside of their base of experience?

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Future Thinking


I’m struggling with the term disruption and its effectiveness in driving urgency. Most definitions describe a radical change in an industry or business strategy, and most involve the introduction of a new product or service that creates a new market. My struggle is not with this decades old view of disruption, but its application in the context of our exponential world. The word disruption is viewed through a traditional lens. I end up in debates about the validity of a disruptive scenario as viewed through this lens, versus the massive implications of these future scenarios viewed through an exponential lens. The ensuing dialog focuses on:

  • Coming up with disruptive innovation before our competitors do
  • Embracing protectionist behavior to block a disruptor
  • I’m not worried, regulatory hurdles in my industry block the impact of disruptors
  • I’m safe, my industry is very stable

Future Thinking

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Structural Change: Decentralization


I had the pleasure of joining The Digital World with Game Changers radio program for the second time this year. Joining me as panelists were Futurist Gray Scott and SAP Innovation Evangelist Timo Elliott. First, kudos to program host Bonnie D. Graham for doing a wonderful job keeping the discussion energized and interesting. The title of the session was Eating Disruption for Lunch: Digesting Decentralization. Now there’s a term not heard much outside of futurist circles. Decentralization is one of those structural changes that make what lies ahead so impactful. According to Wikipedia, decentralization is the process of redistributing or dispersing functions, powers, people, or things away from a central location or authority.

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