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10 years of blogging about foresight

In October 2007, I started this blog. I had pent-up ideas to share about foresight. Over 10 years, I’ve posted 236 times. 

Has it been valuable? Plenty of readers benefited. But I know I gained the most. Thinking through and writing the posts let me to refine how I communicate about foresight. And I know that better communication fueled others’ interest and work.

Creating the posts also prepared me for teaching and advising organizations on foresight: its power, its essentialness, and how people can do it with the constraints they face in their organizations.

Foresightculture turned out to be about 95% about the processes of foresight and 5% about “what is the future?” The “how” was a natural fit for me and was where I had the most interest in sharing my thinking.

Blogging clarified for me how I think about foresight, and evolved in tandem with my sense of the role I play as a futurist. That role today is more about being the guide to how to change minds and understand change than it is foreseer of the future. When I sit with others to help them, I’m first and foremost there to help them change how they think.

Here are some insights from the ten years:

  1. In foresight, it is the journey that matters, not the forecast, report, or briefing at the end.
  2. Foresight is about changing minds. What you change them to may be critical for you, but the first order of business is unlocking people’s thinking.
  3. My readers are often alone in their quest for clarity on the future. They need allies and they need techniques.
  4. Foresight seems difficult and mysterious to people. People want grab-and-go tools and instructions, not theory. That has made my posts on environmental scanning, SWOTs analysis, and scenarios “best sellers” on my blog.
  5. People want to visualize what foresight is, what it means, and how it’s done. They gain from simple, draw-it-on-the-nearest-whiteboard doodles that give people an “ah ha!”. My favorite is “The Mother of All Futures Diagrams“.
  6. People like “listicles”. They know that they will get something pared down to essentials from posts like “6 Foresight Hacks” or “8 things leaders should know about strategic foresight“.
  7. There is no one-size-fits-all explanation or approach to foresight. I write about the same things again and again. Why? Because as I lead workshops, and have conversations, and read and ponder, I discover new angles to come at the same concepts. Someone who didn’t find the last one useful, may find the new one lights them up.

So I will keep going. If I learn and others learn too, it’s well worth what is pleasurable time spent.

Thank you for reading.

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