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inspiring the best and brightest

Gaining Internal Insights 

A blue chip media company straddling the new and old economies wanted to inspire its 100 "best and brightest", and to challenge them to engage with their board on how the future might change the business. Outsights designed a two-day event that exposed the participants to a wide range of future trends, and stimulated them to articulate their own perceptions of the future and present action plans to the Board.

 

The Future of Higher Education 

The meeting, entitled "The Future of Higher Education", looked at how the context of the business was changing and what opportunities may exist. The group also discussed the strategic plan for the business, particularly how the future may be different from the present in each of the three main strategic areas identified in the strategy.

  

The participants identified the key driving forces that they felt would influence the environment for the future of education, including consumer expectations, how people will learn and language. The two most important and uncertain drivers were found to be the education market and technological change, around which the following Scenarios were developed:

 

  • "I Love You" - open, demand driven, free products on the education market and incremental, evolutionary technological change;
  • "Mytopia" - open, demand driven, free products on the education market and continuous technological innovation and uptake;
  • "Piscosoft" - managed, interventionist, supply driven education market and continuous technological innovation and uptake;
  • "Revenge of Uncle Bill" - managed, interventionist, supply driven education market and and incremental, evolutionary technological change.

 

The participants then investigated the strategic implications for the business, which included a shortlist of strategic options, ranking the organisation in terms of capability to undertake these actions and creation of a roadmap to achieve the options.

 

Inspiring Real Change 

The event included participants who ordinarily would not be involved in strategic planning and developed an action plan for the Board. Some insights at the end of the session were:

 

"Our organisation should work collectively on developing strategy."

 

"I have learned more the last day than in the last three years."

 

"Very exciting time for small groups and as a whole; if we can keep hiring this calibre of people (workshop participants) the future of the organisation looks good."

 

"Need to stress the value of taking people out of the day-to-day environment."