Looking Back at Looking Forward

sharing knowledge about organisational foresight

From insight to action

Chapter 8 in Johansen’s latest book and starts with a fantastic quote:

Have deep roots, a strong trunk.
Live long by looking long.
– Lou Tzu, Tao Te Ching

I love it. Tzu evokes the great strength of thinking in the longer-term.

To me ths starts in developing deep knowledge about values, beliefs and historical events in society. Apply that wisdom of the past to examining manisfestations in contemporary institutions, the legal, commercial and political systems and cultural mores and so on… to begin to understand what drives and underpins behaviour.

It means having a broad perspective and an inquisitive mind…along with a drive to make sense of what’s happening through identifying and understanding connections between events and people. From this, go on to develop a sense and feel for what may shape society over the horizon.

A degree of confidence develops to act in ways more likely to make a difference – tested by playing out possible consequences and possibilities in the longer-term. And all qualitfied of course by the need to continuously deal with complexity and emergence.

Lao Tzu apparently expressed his wisdom some 2,500 years ago….again reminding us that some things do not change. Us. Tzu main focus was survival. Today we think about sustainablility. The same discipline applies.


February 3, 2008 Posted by | foresight | , , | Leave a comment