4 Questions to Turn Everyone in Your Company Into a Futurist

by Faisal Hoque for Fast Company


Remember what 1997 was like? How well?

It was Amazon’s first full fiscal year. Microsoft’s Windows 97 operating system wasn’t there quite yet, and it soon became Windows 98. The internet bubble was on its way, but we couldn’t see it. Y2K was around the corner, too, but few of us were worried yet. Google? Not for another two years. Many companies were still asking themselves if they really needed a web page, and professionals were deciding whether or not to get an email address.

Most of us aren’t futurists, and futurists aren’t oracles. They simply try and make some sense of what’s coming—not hard and fast predictions, just possibilities. The most accurate forecasts we’re able to make are often necessarily broad. What’s always clear is simply that technology will only burrow deeper into our world and organizations, disrupting the way we do things and throwing more threats and opportunities in our way. How it will is more of an open question by comparison.

Still, there are a few ways companies can get better at predicting not just what changes may be around the corner, but how they’ll affect them once those disruptions arrive. Making everyone in your company more effective futurists all starts with asking the right questions. Here are a few of them.

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