Think: If you’re a leader in your organization, I encourage you to read–and then think deeply–about this article: Strategy as a Catalyst for Change. Thinking long-term can sometimes feel like a “fool’s game” because so much of the deep future (10+ years) is unknowable and will be unpredictable. Alas, not everything is unknowable. One thing that is reasonably certain is that the future of 2033 will be very different from today. The question prudent leaders can ask right now is this: What might our business become? By shaking yourself and your company or organization out of the status quo, you can find the space and creative energy to imagine entirely new opportunities for growth.
Think in Questions: Here’s a good question to ask yourself occasionally: Why is the world of technology accelerating? One reason is because certain technologies — such as computers and artificial intelligence — are advancing at an exponential rate. These advances, in turn, fuel progress in other areas. One case in point: Quantum computers are now being used to create new materials that may be used to make solar cells more efficient. The end result is that solar technology is getting better and more affordable because researchers are leveraging computers to make new discoveries in material science.
Think Different: Many parts of the U.S. and, indeed, the world are experiencing severe drought. This is a problem which is likely to grow more acute in the years and decades ahead. One unconventional approach that may offer some assistance is cloud seeding. In fact, some western states are already turning to the approach to fight severe drought. The technique works by dropping compounds like silver iodine into the atmosphere. According to scientific studies the approach may increase rainfall by as much as 15 percent. This might not prevent all droughts but it could make the difference for some farmers and some communities in dry areas.
Think Bigger: A few years ago, Amazon patented the idea of floating warehouses. The idea hasn’t gone anywhere yet, but blimps appear to be staging a mild comeback. MIT recently published an article on the “Big Blimp Boom” and profiled a number of companies exploring how blimps could be used to carry cargo, reduce the carbon footprint of the transportation and shipping industries, and even ferry passengers for whom time and speed of travel is not a priority. (Think retirees).
Think Faster: Every year, close to 42,000 women die of breast cancer in the U.S. If the disease is detected early, the odds of survival increase significantly. MIT has recently developed a new “smart bra” that can detect tumors when they are still in their earliest stage.
Afterthought: “The world is moved along not only by the mighty shoves of its heroes, but also by the aggregate of the tiny pushes of each honest worker.”–Helen Keller