How Do You Predict What is Going to Happen?
Every business and organization needs to anticipate the future. Failure to anticipate where things are going often results in outdated models that hinder organizational effectiveness. But how do you predict what is going to happen?
You can’t. But one part of the solution is found in the title for a book that Peter Drucker once said he wanted to write: “The Future that has Already Happened.”
Joseph Pine, co-author of The Experience Economy, put it this way: “We see what’s going on in the world — not what will happen, but what is already happening that most people do not yet see. Then we develop frameworks that enable others to see it too and determine what they should do about it.”
In other words, the critical skill for anticipating the future is actually the ability to understand the present. That is, to understand the present in a way that goes beyond the obvious. The way things will go tomorrow is to a large extent a function of what is happening now, but which most of us just don’t have the frameworks to see.