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Accelerate innovation through scenario planning

Innovation—creating a new product or service or transforming how existing services are delivered—begins with the ability to see beyond current assumptions about the future. Strategic foresight practices combine rigorously vetted evidence with wide-ranging imagination to explore new possibilities.

Scenarios—fictional, but plausible, vignettes about possible future operating environments—offer a concrete way for people to explore their assumptions about what the future could be like, and to envision alternatives.

People engage deeply with information when it is presented in story form, and as a result, often have more powerful conversations and insights than they might otherwise.

Finally, because scenarios engage through empathy, the way stories do, they can be an important tool in attracting the attention of leadership and propelling people to action.

We like to use scenarios for all of these reasons. Scenarios pave the way for analyzing the implications of potential decisions, grasping the needs of future stakeholders, and envisioning entrepreneurial possibilities for navigating a changing environment.

Today as never before, we need a multiplicity of visions, dreams and prophecies— images of potential tomorrow.

Before we can rationally decide which alternative pathways to choose … we must first ascertain which are possible. Conjecture, speculation and the visionary view thus become as coldly practical a necessity as feet-on-the-floor “realism” was in an earlier time.

This is why some of the world’s biggest and most tough-minded corporations, once the living embodiment of presentism, today hire intuitive futurists, science fiction writers and visionaries as consultants.

– Alvin Toffler, Futurist (1928-2016)

Working with imagination

3 principles for using imagination in strategic settings


Everyone has imagination

We reject the notion that some people are more imaginative than others. Everyone comes to the table with the ability to envision new possibilities. Our job is to help you activate imagination in productive directions


Collaboration is key

Imaginative thinking in an organizational setting is best as a collaborative activity. There is solid social scientific evidence that more diverse input, divergent thinking and better ideas arise in contexts in which people think together


Allow excitement 

Using imagination is not a ‘soft’ activity but a rigorous one with criteria of its own. Using creativity to meet strategic ends requires permitting excitement around “What if …?” questions and exploring novel ideas without immediate judgment 

contact us to discuss a scenario planning project

How we can work together on a scenario planning project

We work with clients seeking to use scenarios to explore the future and test their assumptions in various ways depending on needs, time and budget.

Contact Prescient
  • We can research and write scenarios on your behalf. You can then share the research results and scenarios with stakeholders as conversation starters about how the future will be different today and the need to explore existing assumptions further.
  • Facilitated short-term process. We can facilitate quick scenario-building sessions that model the process for your team while introducing the value of testing assumptions through scenarios.
  • Often, scenario building is an intermediate step in a deeper process that may take place over weeks or months. We collaborate with you to identify the drivers of change in your operating environment, then co-create scenarios, and ultimately use the scenarios as a test-bed to improve your existing strategy or build a roadmap of actions to develop your desired future.
Introduction to Strategic Foresight

How Does Strategic Foresight Work?

Learn more about strategic foresight and how a formal foresight engagement can help you identify and leverage the trends that matter most to your future success, in this introduction.


Download Introduction to Strategic Foresight

Strategic Foresight to Accelerate Innovation & Ensure Sustainability

Companies experiencing significant growth spurts face the need to plan more deliberately and less opportunistically. Strategic Foresight can help you mature your planning process and become future-minded on a larger scale.

Read a Case Study


You brought an energy to our discussions that was well received by our participants. Your knowledge of strategic foresight and your ability to facilitate discussion among a group of business leaders is a unique mix. You made our attendees feel comfortable talking about topics that were sometimes uncomfortable.

Kelli Nieneber, Executive Director, Equipment Leasing & Finance Foundation

Our company was in crucial need of creating a development plan and global marketing strategy based on current and future trends in ICT and Artificial Intelligence. Prescient's insights into future trends in advanced technology, including Artificial Intelligence, played a key role in our company’s multidimensional approach to our security solution upgrade and global market penetration strategy.

Jin Yong Chung / UMV Technology

By breaking down your strategies for future forecasting into  achievable steps, you encouraged the audience to see the future as something they have the capacity to shape, influence and benefit from, instead of something they must reactively respond to.

- Dr. Jennifer Jefferis / Near East & South Asia Center