Breaking the Past’s Lock on Our Future

The future is always layered over the past.

That’s the insight that has stayed with me two weeks after the Association of Professional Futurists October 4-6 annual gathering in Pittsburgh. While this futurist gathering themed around the Resurgent City and the Future of Urban Environments showcased local examples of what the near future might be, that future clearly struggles to rise above the limitations of existing infrastructure and beliefs.

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Optimistic Narratives for Futures We Dare Dream

Envisioning an optimistic future can be harder than you think. Too many organizations find they can only come up with their best version of what they imagine they can get today.

This makes Joe Tankersley’s new book, Reimagining Our Tomorrow: Making Sure Your Future Doesn’t SUCK, a good read for those who are imagination-challenged.

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Searching for Meaningful Impact & Outcome Metrics

While most associations try to develop metrics to monitor progress in achieving their strategic goals, few are able to find a good way to measure impact and outcomes.

This means metrics tend to default to process indicators—did we do what we said we would do? Or they rely on metrics of organizational health—did we make budget, add to reserves, increase membership or registrations? These are certainly good indicators an organization continues to move in the right direction. But they are not good proxies for determining whether effort applied created the desired outcome.

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