Futuring is a valuable tool for leaders and organizations of all kind to utilize to better adapt to the rapid pace of change impacting the world. A given constant of life is that change is coming, and everyone must decide how they will adapt to change. Unfortunately, with the growing pace of change, many people find themselves behind and playing catch up (Cornish, 2005). By utilizing futuring, leaders and organizations are able to develop foresight about the future through the art of converting knowledge of the past into knowledge of the future (Cornish, 2005). Those with good foresight are able to think ahead intuitively, identify and assess a wide variety of possibilities and making astute judgments about what will work out best over time (Cornish, 2005). Leaders and organizations who choose to develop and utilize futuring will be equipped with sharpened skills of assessing probabilities, anticipating consequences, and choosing even wiser courses of action that can lead to the best possible future (Cornish, 2005).
Futuring is, however, not a perfect science of predicting the future. Rather, it is making educated predictions through the use of past data and current trends in order to identify probable future situations. Though not a perfect system, it is a better approach than pure guessing, or hoping for a future that has no evidence of materializing.
Good futuring follows a framework that focuses on what would be the most critical points to insure success; the framework is made of framing, scanning, forecasting, visioning, planning, and acting (Hines, 2006). This framework of futuring is based on the principle of planning from the future back to the present, rather than a typical approach to planning where the focus is moving from the present towards the future (Marsh, 2002).
Is the ministry world ready to embrace futuring?
Cornish, E. (2005). Futuring: the exploration of the future (1. paperback printing). Bethesda, Md: World Future Society.
Hines, A. (2006). Strategic Foresight: The State of the Art. The Futurist, vol. 40.5, pp. 18–21.
Marsh, N. (2002). Strategic foresight. Melbourne, Vic: Information Australia.