Flash Foresight by Daniel Burrus: The world is changing fast. Are you ready? ~ Brand Mix

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Flash Foresight by Daniel Burrus: The world is changing fast. Are you ready?

whirling people machine by joiseyshowaa (Flickr)
Change used to happen slowly enough that companies could do without effective forward planning and react to changes as they happened. But change is now happening so fast that this type of reactive approach is starting to fail. We have now entered an era of transformational/disruptive change where more and more companies need to reconsider and reinvent how they operate their business or risk getting left behind.

Daniel Burrus' new book Flash Foresight offers help to those who are starting to feel the impact of the faster speed of change. He lays out principles that can help companies develop a clearer picture of the future so that they can plan ahead and take advantage of the opportunities that change brings rather than become one of its victims.

I spoke to Daniel earlier this week as part of the Post2Post Virtual Book Tour (tour dates below). We started our conversation by talking about the inevitability of change and how that challenges human nature which likes to protect and defend the status quo. As human organizations, companies often find it difficult to deal with change. They lock into business models that
reward short-term thinking--models where quarterly performance comes at the expense of investment in the future. When companies are faced with transformational change, their fatal tendency is to react as if it's a storm that will pass (i.e. baton down the hatches, cut marketing and limit R&D) rather than realizing that it's time to radically change direction.

So how can companies prepare themselves for an era of transformational change? Daniel believes that it's important for companies to develop a "futureview," a term he coined to describe the mental picture we hold of our future existence. Companies need to embrace the reality of a radically different future and then do what they can to shape that future in their favor. After all, as Daniel pointed out: "The future is where they're going to make most of their money."

We also talked about branding and how brands can help companies adapt to change. Daniel believes that brands can be a source of inspiration in this new era, helping companies decide how they are going to change. But that only works if brands themselves have a futureview and derive their equity from attributes that will continue to be relevant in the future. Brand managers should ask themselves whether their brands are giving them strong enough guidance on what actions they should be taking to prepare for the future. In this new era, brands need to adapt so they are part of the solution and not contributors to the problem.

A great chat with Daniel and one that only touched on a few of the many ideas in the book. I recommend checking out the posts of the other bloggers talking to Daniel this week. The Post2Post Virtual Book Tour itinerary is:

Monday, March 7th: Jeff De Cagna: Principled Innovation @pinnovation
Tuesday, March 8th: Chris Wilson: The Fresh Peel @FreshPeel
Wednesday, March 9th: Brand Mix @martinjbishop
Thursday, March 10th: Phil Gerbyshak: Make It Great @philgerb
Friday, March 11th: Rajesh Setty: Bringing Ideas To Life @RajSetty

Earlier Post2Post book tour author Brand Mix visits:
Seth Godin: Meatball Sundae
Erika Andersen: Being Strategic

Thanks to Paul Williams (Idea Sandbox) for inviting me to participate and organizing the book tour.

1 comment:

Dan Burrus said...

Martin, thank you for featuring me and my bestselling book Flash Foresight: How To See The Invisible and Do The Possible.

During transformational times like these, it is more important than ever to look for new opportunities, the more you look the more you see! We all must keep in mind that bad news sells, and if there is no bad news to report, the media reports the anniversary of bad news making us all think the future looks dim with few opportunities. There has never been more opportunity to grow and advance than there is now and helping people learn how to see new opportunities and use them to share a positive future is one of the main reasons I wrote Flash Foresight.

I wanted to remind readers that I have put together a wonderful selection of Bonus Resources for the book and they are available at http://www.flashforesight.com/... and I also have many resources on my main website available for download at www.burrus.com

Thanks Again for helping spread the word- Daniel Burrus

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