At room44 we’ve some things to celebrate: a brand new website this week, new projects that we’ll deliver in Q4, and the fact that Jeff Bezos has unknowingly validated one of our core messages: research your potential, pick a point in the future and work back to design your roadmap.
Deciding on a strategic target provides your team with direction and silent guidance. Declaring what you want your company to be in X years helps them make decisions that will get you there. You don’t have to watch them. By being definite in what you believe, they’ll naturally fall in to the right groove.
Why do we think Jeff would agree? On 30th August 2017, the New York Times published this article on the plans for Amazon and Microsoft to collaborate on the development of #Alexa and #Cortana. It contained this quote:
“It is standard at Amazon to create such news releases for internal consumption as part of what Mr Bezos calls the company’s ‘working backward process.’ Through that exercise, Amazon’s teams depict in writing how a new product or service will look to its customers before engineers write a line of code.”
In a happy coincidence, a couple of weeks ago Fast Company Magazine launched its Get Creative programme #fcgetcreative. When you subscribe, the programme sends you a daily creative challenge for two weeks. Day 10 is contributed by #Robert Wong, the Co-Founder and Vice President of Google Creative Labs. Here’s what it says:
“Has anyone ever asked you what you want to be when you ‘grow up?’ What did you say? Today’s challenge from renowned graphic designer Robert Wong might help you answer that question in surprising ways…
WHAT DO YOU WANT TO BE?
First, imagine your most successful self-actualized future self in 20 years and write it down. Once there, imagine what you would have had to achieve 10 years prior and write that down. Then, go back five years. Then 2.5 years—until you get to one year from today. Experiencing an epiphany? Most people do!”
The concept of jumping forward and understanding the intermediary steps to get to a future goal isn’t a new idea. But it does work, and the habit forms the basis for strategy. How to decide what the endpoint should be? Well, for that insight you’ll have to call us.
Future thinking. Future proofing. It’s what we do.