Futuring work

BAC has many services to help organizations develop their forecasting capacity.  We select a mix of these into the right combination for each group, depending on their needs and situation:

  • Trends report.  This is an interactive presentation of major trends in the present most likely to shape the future for a specific organization’s area of expertise.
  • Trend mapping.  Participants learn how to identify future trends in their own work and lives, collaboratively building up a trends map for their domain.
  • Environmental scanning.  Participants analyze the present for signals of the future, identifying and sharing their sources and strategies.  The group develops a map of current trends, while growing a collaborative intelligence approach.
  • Scenario presentation.  We present several possible futures for a group’s field of interest.  We can draw on a library of forty scenarios from the world of technology, information, education, and culture, or custom design scenarios for an organization’s specific needs.  BAC likes to share a mix of scenarios (such as one optimistic, one pessimistic, one with unusual outcomes, one conservative), but can shape this set based on a client’s needs.
  • Scenario development.  Participants build their own quarter of scenarios.  They begin by working with a trends map (either generated by themselves or shared with them), identifying the most uncertain and unpredictable drivers of the future.  Participants then turn a pair of those trends into four distinct scenarios.
  • Delphi method.  This exercise has participants identify major trends in their field, broken down into several areas: critical challenges, most influential technologies, opportunities, and so on.  Participants then rank trends and determine the most important ones over a series of iterations.  The outcome is a fine sense of professionals’ assessment of their field’s future.

Each of these exercises is very interactive, in that our presenters engage diverse audiences carefully, supporting all participants in their reflection and communication.  We facilitate well, gently bringing out complementary and contradictory opinions, enriching an organization’s ability to communicate and work together.  We record discussions in digital tools projected for the group to see; resulting documents are available afterwards for clients.

Workshops are flexible for time, requiring at least thirty minutes for each of the above exercises, and arranged in any order.