Know what’s coming next!

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On a family holiday last week so didn’t read my emails much, so this weekend scooting through trying to get through as many as possible. It’s a boring exercise but it gave me pause for thought when I saw how many invites I had for events on AI, RPA, digital transformation etc. As none of these are immediately relevant to the re-organisations and transformations I am involved in I deleted them but……..

 In a world of high-volume change don’t we all have a responsibility to keep up with the latest ideas and synthesise these for potential impacts on our organisations? If we don’t, how can we work out if the changes we are leading have the right scope or are heading in the right direction?

This blog is not a lecture from an expert, but I thought I would share my tips for trying to keep up to speed, as my job means I have to have a view about so many industries.

1. Schedule this work

Keeping up to date and thinking about the possible futures we might be working in is a part of our jobs. We must do our current role, but we have to innovate, and ideas fuel those innovations. Acquiring information and questioning its impact takes time and needs to be a regular task. I dedicate one of my train journeys to work towards the end of the week to this (my brain on a Monday/Tuesday can only do immediate tasks to survive the week!)

2. Use a range of sources

Business press, scientific journals, websites for professional bodies and institutes, papers from consultancies, latest launches of platforms and apps as well as broader social information from magazines and the weekend papers as well as Tedtalks and answers from questions I pose on YouTube.

3. Share your insights

Share what you find and the ideas it triggers for you with colleagues, clients etc to get a different perspective and generate even more thoughts.

4. Think about practical applications

Develop a scientific mindset. Start with the question “could we try that here”. Develop potential pilots and trials and think through the possible results. Get others interested. Keep it small scale, think how it might go wrong and have a blackout plan. Get someone with authority (and some budget) interested and try it out. Measure your results, share what you learnt and become a source of information yourself.


In an environment of ever-increasing change, having an opinion about what comes next makes you a valuable resource. Please share your ideas for keeping yourself up to speed with what is coming next as I am sure your ideas will inspire us all to do more.