Virtual reality (VR) is an interactive computer-generated experience taking place within a simulated environment. It incorporates mainly auditory and visual feedback, but may also allow other types of sensory feedback. This immersive environment can be similar to the real world or it can be fantastical.
source: Digital Social Innovation
- Identify three relatively diverse case studies of the people that you help / the work that you do
- Gather a small engaged group from your team for an exploratory’discussion
- Together read the definition of VR above
- Give them 10 minutes to note down the possible differences that VR might be making in the lives of your three subjects in 8-10 years time (the specific timeline is unimportant it’s ‘far enough in the future to be Not Like Today')
- These ideas do NOT have to have any direct relationship to your organisation at this stage
- Encourage the fantastical!
- Take 40 minutes to swap these visions of the future; build the scenarios to be as detailed as you can imagine
- Take a short break and then reconvene to ask, so what might that mean for Our Mission?
- What are the opportunities?
- What are the risks?
- Then what does that mean today regarding
- Our overall strategy / growth model
- Our people strategy
- Our partnerships
- Our technology
- Our funding
- Congratulations! It’s quick, imperfect and will certainly raise questions, but you’ve just taken an important step towards ‘future-proofing’ your organisation
You may find that
- You (awkwardly) realise that you don’t know that much about the lives of your beneficiaries
- This is a great incentive is to deepen that understanding and likely, the design and delivery of your current projects
- There is a resistance to exploring unknowns (‘this isn’t relevant’ / ‘what’s the point’ / ‘I don’t know how…’)
- This exercise is an opportunity for the team to strengthen their thinking ‘agility’ and creativity. Move through this discomfort by keeping it playful!
This process can be replicated and built upon for other emerging trends; see our free QuickStart guide at www.futurepurpose.org for more ideas.