Creating challenging and plausible views of the future
What is scenario planning?
are instruments for ordering people’s perceptions about alternative
futures in which decisions made today might play out. A scenario
embodies a plausible view or perception of the future in a given
year linked to conditions in the present via an internally consistent
sequence of events. A scenario could be described as a road map
from the present to the future.
planning is a strategic planning tool or method for improving
decision making against a background of possible future environments.
In simple terms, a scenario is an internally consistent account
of how the external environment in which an organisation operates
might develop and change over time. An organisation assessing
long term prospects with the aid of scenarios as part of its strategic
planning would typically build up multiple scenarios to make sense
of the large number of diverse, but inter-connected factors in
the external environment.
Why choose scenario planning?
If you are facing critical
decisions for the future of your organisation or industry and
the business environment is complex and dynamic with long lead
times, then scenarios offer many advantages over traditional forecasting
techniques. Scenarios can lead to better decision making for the
future because they involve decision makers in learning about
the forces shaping the future. Scenarios allow individuals and
organisations to perceive unexpected influences in their business
environments and to view the future through new and different
lenses. Scenarios uncover new strategies and provide a framework
for testing the robustness of new and existing strategies. Scenarios
are tools for organisational learning.
How do your use scenario planning?
There are a number of different
approaches to creating scenarios, but they all have a common starting
point. That is to clearly formulate the topic or issue of importance
to the client audience. The subsequent steps take you on a journey
of learning and discovery, through identification of critical
uncertainties to seeing how these factors can drive change in
different ways with significantly different outcomes via the scenarios.
Scenes can help you design an approach
to developing scenarios for your organisation or industry. Mike
has extensive experience in facilitating scenario planning workshops
and guiding the development of scenarios. Mike has worked with
public and private sector organisations in Australia and overseas in the fields of information and telecommunications,
forestry and wood products, scientific research and development
and information services.