An innovative culture allows an enterprise to be more anticipatory as opposed to reactive in nature. Being anticipatory is a competitive advantage against the backdrop of faster change and disruption occurring around us as a result of computing power, bandwith, and digital storage. Amid increased change and uncertainty it is no longer enough to 1. simply be agile and 2. benchmark as you will always be a step behind.
An innovative culture also improves the accuracy of anticipating the future, allows decisions to be made with greater confidence, drives exponential, disruptive innovation with lower risk, and increases trust within an organization. This empowers an organization to shape and influence the world around it from the inside out rather than react from the outside in.
The ability to anticipate and shape the future requires the ability to distingiuish between hard and soft trends. Hard trends are based on facts and are a certainty. Soft trends can be based on hard or soft assumptions. Hard assumptions are based on facts but have the ability to change whereas soft assumptions are opinions based on facts. Planning based on hard trends and soft trends based on hard assumptions allow an organization to anticipate and shape the future. This also forces the organization to have a view towards the future rather than rearview mirror thinking. This is all the more important because how you view the future impacts how you act in the present which shapes your future.