Future Perspectives Presentations
Talks on what-lies-ahead enlighten and start the audience thinking about the possibilities of the future by giving them a new frame of reference. A talk can be targeted to the industry, the organization, or a theme.
Usually lasting half a day, ideation sessions are based on advanced brainstorming techniques created to draw ideas from everyone regardless of their personality type. Other techniques build on these ideas, and draw out additional salient ideas as well.
This service provides a visual perspective of the impact of a trend or future event. An Impact Analysis enlists the team in understanding all the facets and interrelationships inherent in the future topic. We facilitate Impact Analysis sessions and lead the discussion afterward.
Major Trends and Disruptors Studies
Through a scanning and surveillance process as well as directed research and expert opinion, the team identifies major trends and disruptions that will affect society and your organization. This analysis can be specifically oriented to your organization and packaged in a variety of ways, such as an informal session with a small group, a presentation to your executives, staff, and other stakeholders, a Grand Challenges workshop, or through a Future Study.
Forecasts of future technology form the foundation of any effort to focus on specific markets as they provide the information to justify, prioritize, and track strategic plans. We use a variety of tools across the quantitative-qualitative spectrum to assure that our forecasts are accurate, communicable to a diverse audience, and actionable.
A firm's market position doesn't last forever these days. When it does hold up, revenue and profits shrink. A market assessment identifies what is happening in the specific market and what can be done about it. This information can be used to create a new strategy and inform employees, customers, financial analysts, and thought leaders of the wisdom of strategy shifts. Or, like a yearly physical checkup, market assessments are simply useful to discern what incremental changes need to be made.
Regional Opportunity Analysis
Geographic areas need to break away from fads and high level visions to find select technology-based opportunities to pursue. These opportunities must match their culture, assets, and abilities in a way that brings all community stakeholders into the process, and empowers them to work as pre-competitive teams to assure success in each chosen area.
Industry Focus Sessions
Members of an industry come together in a pre-competitive forum to identify and address opportunities to benefit the industry. These forums involve surveying industry membership for their care-abouts and pain-points as well as identifying external trends that will impact it. This forms the basis for focus areas for the industry to pursue collaboratively. Our unique tools, extensive knowledge base, and innovative insights will facilitate the focusing activity.
Within an organization it is difficult to get a full, balanced, and objective perspective of the investment in technology. Our team acts as a disinterested intermediary to assess factors such as the technical characteristics, customer requirements, technology life, competitiveness, manufacturability, and business case of your investment. The output can take the form of value analysis, risk analysis, or strategic recommendations.
Business Incubator Assessment
Incubators are sponsored by many different organizations: a large company, a university, a community, or a private party. Over a series of crises, new practices in incubation have evolved, for example, in funding, intellectual asset protection, globalization, and in collaboration. The technology landscape is undergoing a sea change in convergence in areas such as digital systems, biotech/nanotech, and infotech/neurotech. An assessment of how well the incubation infrastructure is working with recommendations for change should be done periodically. The Strategic Pathways team’s experience across a range of technologies and organizational types, as well as its understanding of future trends and disruptors, is a source of unique insight for such an assessment.
Future Studies Process Development
A future studies process is a valuable addition to the strategic processes of an organization. It is the headlights that allow the organization to look forward and move faster. Our experience as futurists and our attention to strategic methods, tools, and processes that gain insight from the future is applied to helping you develop a future studies process. The steps involved include gaining an appreciation of the impact of future knowledge, assessing the current futures IQ of the organization, designing a process that fits the care-abouts, capabilities, and culture of the organization, building a business case, and training in tools, techniques, and methodologies needed for the function’s success.
Ascertaining the proper role and influence of all the stakeholders in a situation is paramount to a successful outcome. More importantly, understanding the signals of a shift in stakeholder position, and doing the analysis, allows the organization to create messages. Responsive actions can to change those positions so that they are more favorable to the desired outcome.
Impact Analysis offers a quick way to uncover the necessary parameters in setting a strategy. It can also be used later for strategy analysis and implementation. It excels at finding gaps and hidden weaknesses, drivers and restraints, and potential wild cards and tipping points. We facilitate impact analysis sessions, and document the results with our recommendations.
Weak Signal Analysis
Weak signals are the seeds for insight, and have many uses in the services we offer. For example, as input to a strategy exercise, weak signals can be the basis for a risk assessment, and rationalize the need for an alternative strategy. In a prior form, they can be the basis for scanning activity to track a scenario. The weak signal analysis team has tools for identifying current and potential weak signals.
Drivers and Constraints / Force Field Analysis
Drivers and constraints and force field analysis methodologies look at forces for change. They derive the factors and their relative strength going into a forecast of technology adoption, understanding of a disruptive event, or other issue. They form the basis of directed decisions in a strategy and differentiate scenarios.
Scenarios represent a powerful way to depict the future by using familiar paradigms of visuals and stories to show the broad range of people to be impacted. They also trigger innovative insights by presenting multiple views that can be used to understand convergences and distinctive differences. Strategic Pathway's scenario planning uses concepts of weak signals, tipping points, fine tuned events, and probability assessment in addition to the traditional approach to this methodology.
Risk Management Assessment
Many of our techniques are used in assessing the risk of a strategy. For example, the methodologies described for future perspectives that operate in the real world can be applied to the world envisioned by the strategy. Since it is imperative that a modern strategy include technology assumptions and impacts as well as leverage innovation, the knowledge and insight derived from tools and techniques used in innovation management to mitigate risk are also applicable for assessing risk.