Hi everybody. Enterprise 2.0 is a little over a week away, so I thought I would give you a sense of what we’ll be doing in the workshop.
First, I will provide an introduction to scenario planning. As discussed in previous blogs, the future of the organization is dependent on context, and that context is rife with uncertainty. People need a robust way to reason about the future in situations of high uncertainty. Scenario planning is my tool of choice, so I will share what it is, how it works, and why it is important.
Next, I will give you access to a set of scenarios I developed around the future of work. These scenarios will help you get a sense of how uncertainties play out differently under various social, technological, economic, environmental, and political circumstances.
Then you will have some time to play with these ideas. I won’t give you the entire exercise, but it will involve creating a person living in one of these futures and exploring various information about him or her, from where they live to how he or she uses technology, involves themselves in innovation, and how they get the information they use to make decisions. You will quickly learn that the answer to these questions may be very different if you are handed a future that differs from the one you personally believe will occur.
Scenario planning is a very practical discipline. Many people think that because it is future-oriented, it doesn’t inform tactical plans. I ask, “aren’t all plans future-oriented? Do you consider elements that are beyond your control? If so, how do you know you have a good understanding of the uncertainties your organization faces? What framework helps you explore options for how those uncertainties play out.”
For organizations that adopt scenario planning, the language of the future becomes a regular part of the way they do work, and it informs all of their plans, not just their strategic plans. The best firms use scenarios to force them into agile states—which is why it is so difficult to describe what an agile organization does—because agile organizations are a state of being, not a set of processes. Come learn how to use scenario planning to be more agile at Enterprise 2.0.
My colleague, Sara Roberts, will follow and provide tools for helping people manage through the practicalities of working in an uncertain world.
I look forward to a well-attended session with a lot of interaction and learning. I want to be challenged and to have everyone, including the facilitators, come out of the session with deeper insights, more resilient positions, and greater agility.
See you there.