We wanted to paint the possibilities five years into the future to provide a more stimulating object for contrast and analysis than our current numbers and current competition.
To be clear, I don’t think there was any genius in the question – as I’m sure you’ll agree – but the way the team came together that day to piece together the threads of the preceding months was simply fantastic. It was one of those days when everyone was on fire.
To avoid running deep at the expense of wide, we identified up front the full gamut of things we felt we needed to discuss at some point. This turned out to be an effective discipline, particularly because everything seemed to be connected in the end, although that was still far from apparent at 9am.
You’ll know how days like these go, so I won’t try and pretend the following summary reflects the actual sequence of discussion – that jumped around quite a bit. I’ve actually cheated by cutting and pasting from a post-event internal report that attempted to construe a more logical structure from the copious flip chart scrawling, the Post-It™ notes, and Sarah’s comprehensive notes.
Obviously, whenever the memo dwells on topics I’ve covered in the narrative to this point, I’ll point that out rather than have you read it again. I’m nice like that.
Notes from the away day
The theme of the day was set by one simple question: What will it mean to be in business in five years time?
The notes are grouped around the following keywords: brand, transparency, authenticity, service, complexity, big data, measurement, influence, and social business. While actions have owners assigned, given that everything is inter-connected, you should consider your work iterative subject to its fit into the bigger picture.