We are in the midst of an intense change cycle. Forecasting lab FutureScape 248 envisions that in the next six to nine months alone, we can expect to see the type of acceleration in the use of digital innovation by enterprise formerly rolles out on a two-year timeframe. Organisations, governments and citizens now have to reframe, exhibit resilience and rally a recovery.
‘Humanity 5.0’– created by FutureScape 248’s founder, innovation Futurist Shivvy Jervis represents a set of thinking and approaches that will help mobilise our existing human capacity and potential, at all times keeping people in the equation.
Six Takeaways for organisations from the Humanity 5.0 webinar
1. The Internet of ‘Everything’ (IoE) & touchless scenarios will see wider proliferation
We’ll see the Internet of Things (connecting objects, sensors, devices to the internet), morph into the Internet of Everything (connecting bodies, places, and human skills). Covid will prompt a serious ramping up from companies to make use of IoE as this lends itself beautifully to physical distancing because the premise is you are able to control the system remotely.
You could monitor the warehouse and factory floor without needing to be there, track the health of equipment and pre-empt issues before they come a problem.
Within IoE, we’ll also see a move towards touchless controls – with scenarios going well beyond tapping your card for a contactless payment. These systems will replace physical keypads or buttons with touchless buttons you can manipulate mid-air, at workplaces, retail centres, public amenities and communal services.
Notable companies to watch: Look up UltraHaptics
2. Uptick in Immersive Reality to reskill workforce and brainstorm new product lines
Neuroscience research shows we learn and retain up to 4x more using immersive ways of teaching over traditional methods. Coupled with the need to reskill workforces and create new revenue opportunities, this calls for the use of immersive or Mixed Reality (MR).
MR tools transport the user into a simulated, virtual environment that also allows objects or experiences to appear onto our real worlds (a fusion of virtual and augmented reality) and often take the shape of a sleek, lightweight headset.
Over the past few years, it has become clear that this now-affordable technology is no longer the realm of just gamers, big tech giants or Hollywood. MR is being used by engineering, FMCG brands, automative and manufacturing companies to train employees effectively, enable employees to brainstorm product lines and ideate in a multi-networked way across geographies.
Imagine a specialist in Sweden, expert in India and project manager in London all immersed in the same visual environment and manipulating blueprints and objects in real time, making iterations as they go along.
Notable companies to watch: Look up Microsoft’s Hololens, Blippar AR and the Ikea Places app
3. The moral economy anyone?
Pre-Covid we thought about leading in a digital economy and now we’re leading digitally in a hybrid economy. The pandemic is forcing a re-assessment of organisational transparency, ethics and values.
One notion coming to the fore is the moral economy – a heightened focus on responsible governance. Organisations and their leaders must consistently ask – what are the values driving us and how will our actions reflect them?
Citizens will place more accountability on leaders to display a dutiful sense of responsibility to stakeholders extending beyond their immediate Board and towards the wider communities in which they operate.
From analysing a number of sentiment polls, FutureScape 248 finds that those leaders seen as making socially irresponsible decisions now (ie in 2020) will see reputation and sales affected post-Covid. Consumers are far more socially conscious than before and risk thinking “I won’t buy from these guys when this is all over”.
Lastly, the concept of leadership itself must be seen as a collective, versus being vested solely in a person, Board or group of senior executives – inclusivity is key.
4. Using the Covid-crisis to unblock long-standing issues
In our work with organisations, FutureScape 248 is finding that the global pandemic and its subsequent economic impact is creating a sense of pressure in organisations that is helping unlock and set in motion aspects that were previously set in stone.
The sudden loss of physical supervision is reducing toxic silos, infusing more agility and creating more accelerated decision making. Flatter structures are distributing control more fairly to those lower in the hierarchy. Some unnecessary red tape is being done away with.
The prime question is – might it be possible to use this opportunity to embed some of these valuable ways of working and take them forward post pandemic?
5. Infusing an Inventor Mindset: Don’t kill the experimentation!
“In the beginner’s mind there are many possibilities, but in the expert’s there are few”
Says Zen monk and author Shunryu Suzuki speaking of the conflict between norms and ingenuity.
At FutureScape 248, we call this the Inventor Mindset. To flourish through Covid and into 2021, leaders could do well to exhibit some of the behaviours associated with the time they were starting out in their own industries – mainly, fewer preconceived notions and the receptivity to challenging current approaches when another might yield better outcomes.
Early stage founders rarely hesitate to get down and dirty in the trenches in order to understand what their front-line employees are dealing with and don’t shy away from product and service experimentation. Whilst it’s important to steady the ship during the current crisis, organisations would be myopic to ‘kill the experimentation’ when it might have opened up vital new sources of revenue at a time when the company needed it the most.
6. The Reboot: Three Myths about digital transformation
“Digital engineering doesn’t need policing”. In actuality, there is a great need for ethical oversight. AI, data science, cyber security and blockchain systems are prone to issues of bias (eg programmer’s bias stemming into AI-powered recruitment software), coercive control (using data to monitor others) and onus or legality (eg if a driverless car hurts someone, who is responsible?).
“Technology is largely about cold, clinical, lines of code”. Technological innovation calls for a much higher degree of creativity than many might think. Some of the best innovators are not necessarily coders or programmers and often deeply creative thinkers.
“Digital transformation is the remit of the IT department”. This is not primarily an IT challenge. Far from that, it is a process – a movement, really – that must be planned by diverse people and see representation at the table from across business lines.
Three PROJECT COLLABORATIONS undertaken by Shivvy Jervis and FutureScape 248
- Futurist of choice invited by the Mayor of London’s office to envision the future city of 2040 and conceive the future of learning in 2030. Learn more
- Headline speaker at the Oslo Business Forum, moderator of a special fireside chat with David Cameron and keynote speaker for the United Nations. Watch
- What are six jobs of the future that may not exist now but will do in the next few years? Investigative video thought leadership for a global recruiter. Watch
Interested in booking Shivvy Jervis for an event?