This story suggesting more companies are hiring futurists caught our attention this morning. Futurists research and predict trends, then determine how business and industries will need to evolve their product and service offerings to stay relevant to changing societal trends and consumer demands. Futurists can suggest product lines, product features, or complete, dramatic overhauls of an existing business.
At Refinery Lab, we often step in as futurists for our businesses – envisioning how their industry will evolve, interviewing and surveying customers and laying out next steps for keeping the business ahead of consumer demand.
The rapid pace of technological change – and large size of many companies – can sometimes make it difficult to determine the need for this sort of change, or to drive it, from the inside. Hiring a futurist familiar with social sciences, economics, technology and statistical research methods is one way to bring in expertise that can accelerate the process of change in your organization. Futurists may also identify opportunities no one internal was previously focused on, or assist in prioritizing existing research and development initiatives to ensure your organization remains ahead of the curve and competitors.