Yesterday, I was delighted to be a guest at a World 50 event for very senior executives. The organizations creates a forum in which people can have honest, open dialogues and share best practices. The day looked at how difficult it is to anticipate massive changes that can affect entire industry segments. Among the conclusions was that having honest, candid conversations with people who have insight into the future is a key issue for senior executives. Those conversations, unfortunately, often don't take place until the situations is truly dire.
The topic of critical conversations was one I raised in a recent Long Range Planning article on business models. It caught the eye of consultant Matt Stocker, who blogged about the idea as well.
The core concept is to make sure that you are continuously exposed to people with a different perspective than your own, people who are either experts in technologies, new markets, or transformations that could potentially be disruptive to your business so that you pick up the early warning signals quickly.