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Scenario Planning
The goal of scenario planning in the context of the development of an overall strategic plan is to raise the collective knowledge of management by providing a vehicle for enlightenment, communications, and trust; and to build consensus for strategies that will better prepare the organization for almost any future world. This vehicle, the scenario, plays upon the fundamental characteristic of the human psyche to construct stories based upon experiences, external events, and aspirations. By sharing the diversity of these experiences and aspirations in a common setting of uncertain events, the scenario provides a commonality that instills confidence and transforms the group into a high performing, future-looking team. Scenario planning, when used in the context of an overarching strategic plan for the organization, can identify the few robust strategies that are applicable in a number of disparate future worlds. The pursuit of those robust strategies will enhance the possibility of success for the organization.

The willingness and courage to face such uncertainty requires a revolutionary transformation in most organizations. The mental image of success that exists for the organization has to be challenged, and the leaders must be willing to change dynamically with the environment, not in response to it.

ITP’s scearnio planning process utilizes the principles of scenario planning as developed by Peter Schwartz of GBN, expanded to include tools for sustaining organizational engagement. ITP has successfully deployed this process in a wide range of private and public sector environments, as well as within the federal government, with a focus on national security programs, including the nation’s National Laboratories.

Scenarios are a powerful tool to make better decisions about the future, but must be continuously refreshed as current events unfold. ITP assists organizations in creating the internal resources and processes to refresh their scenarios, and identify the critical events that are influencing their future.

In this unstable world, a sequence of discontinuities, particularly when met with inappropriate or no action, could lead to an unthinkable result. It is paramount for those who have accepted the responsibility of leadership to understand the consequences of their actions or inaction, and to engage in the strategic conversations that address the unthinkable so that they may be prepared for any eventuality. ITP’s unique deployment of scenario planning allows the management team to stay fully engaged in strategic discussions long after the planning event, and to become active participants in the future of the organization.

For more information on how ITP might help your organization look into the future and develop confidence in the management team and the organization to prepare for uncertain events, contact ITP Principal Partner, Jack Jekowski