Reports from the Knowledge Labs about our recent findings, research topics, and interviews with lifestyle leaders who are creating their own futures.

How to stimulate your own powers of foresight. Consider the following thought provokers. Ask yourself, in these categories what are the brand new trends and forces? Which are the ones growing in importance? Which current forces are loosing their steam? Which have peaked or are reversing themselves? Which are the "wildcards" about to disrupt us in the future? POLITICAL AND TECHNICAL thought for food: Electronics, Materials, Energy, Fossil, Nuclear, Alternative, Other, Manufacturing (techniques), Agriculture, Machinery and Equipment, Distribution, Transportation (Urban, Mass, Personal, Surface, Sea, Subsurface, Space), Communication (Printed, Spoken, Interactive, Media), Computers (Information, Knowledge, Storage & Retrieval, Design, Network Resources), Post-Cold War, Third World, Conflict (Local, Regional, Global), Arms Limitation, Undeclared Wars, Terrorism, Nuclear Proliferation, Weapons of Mass Destruction, Governments (More/Less Power and Larger or Smaller Scale), Taxes, Isms: Nationalism, Regionalism, Protectionism, Populism, Cartels, Multinational Corporations, Balance of Trade, Third Party Payments, Regulations (OSHA, etc.) Environmental Impact, U.S. Prestige Abroad. SOCIAL AND ECONOMIC Food for thought: Labor Movements, Unemployment / Employment Cycles, Recession, Employment Patterns, Work Hours / Schedules, Fringe Benefits, Management Approaches, Accounting Policies, Productivity, Energy Costs, Balance of Payments, Inflation, Taxes, Rates of Real Growth, Distribution of Wealth, Capital Availability and Costs, Reliability of Forecasts, Raw Materials, Availability and Costs, Global versus National Economy, Market versus Planned Economies, Generations: Y, X, Boomers, Elderly, Urban vs. Rural Lifestyles, Affluent vs. Poor, Neighborhoods and Communities, Planned or Organic Growth. Got Knowledge?

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The Journal of 2020 Foresight
Saturday, August 19, 2006  

It Takes Resilient Athletes To Turn the Corner on High Growth

Chapter Four: The Tribal Territories

By Steve Howard, CKO
The Knowledge Labs

Table of Contents
Chapter One: Basecamp
Chapter Two: The Ridge
Chapter Three: The Outpost
Chapter Four: The Tribal Territories

“Then the cheerleaders all came out, but they looked different. They had camouflage outfits on, raggy, dirty camouflage. They had bandanas in camouflage and war paint on their faces. They were waving a big camouflage flag with a black monkey wrench on it. Sun looked at herself: she was dressed in camouflage, too. She had a little army hat on and a bandana around her forehead, war paint on her cheeks. The Imitators started playing and Sun picked up her megaphone.”

Neil Young & Crazy Horse “Greendale”

DOUBLE NICKEL RANCH. Critical success factors in the start-up stage are 180 degrees different from those that must be mastered to generate demand and meet that demand efficiently.

Journal of 2020 Foresight: Isn’t one of the dirty little secrets that once the enterprise becomes an enterprise – the Agent founder with the vision and unlimited faith needs to step aside.

Explorer: Yes. We call it the Leadership Crisis. The Agent founder swimming upstream all that time against the naysayers – receiving 99 “no’s” for every 1 “yes” -- needs to get out of the way for the enterprise to bridge the chasm from the start-up to emerging growth stage.

J2020F: That can’t be easy. It must be like giving your infant up for adoption.

Explorer: Except they have an exit strategy. Along the way angel investors will have insisted on more control to protect their investment then founders want to relinquish. But it takes green, as in money and as in Athletes -- “The Marketing Athletes” or the evangelists, to create demand and “Resilient Project Teams” to tighten up how operations are run.

J2020F: So, once out of the garage and across the threshold into the “next box” the founder may need to be replaced or reassigned to develop R&D strategies?

Explorer: Yes because, just the right blend of the two talent “tribes” -- Athletes and Agents --has to be optimized if the enterprise is to successfully meet the challenges of survival, stabilization and rapid growth.

J2020F: Isn’t it the Athletes – “Resilient Project Teams” who then figure out the formula for taking a prototype and turning it into a product on a repeatable basis?

Explorer: Yes, because the period of high creativity, organic and fluid organizational collaboration must give way to focused, practical execution.

J2020F: So without them, the enterprise can’t really “turn the corner” to ride the wave of accelerated growth by continuing on their path of least resistance?

Explorer: I’m sure you just broke the rule about mixed metaphors, but in essence you are right.

J2020F: Of course I am, but what about the next set of challenges?

Got Knowledge?
Copyright ©2002 - 2006 Aarnaes Howard Associates. All rights reserved worldwide.

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