Entrepreneurial Insight Identifies What’s Going on Now, but Foresight Will Tell the Future
Many entrepreneurs believe that knowing what’s going on right here and now will help their business reach success, but entrepreneurial insight can only take a business so far.“Business, more than any other occupation, is a continual dealing with the future; it is a continual calculation, an instinctive exercise in foresight” said Henry R. Luce, American magazine magnate. How can a business owner forecast the upcoming years? Leveraging entrepreneurial insight to help indicate where trends will be in the coming years, using accurate charts, graphs, and tables made from nationally available information, is the key to creating foresight; therefore maximizing the future success of a business.
Putting in the Entrepreneurial Work to Gain Insight
Foresight is available to any entrepreneur; it just takes some research and analysis to put together. Nick Weber, 4i Principal, equates foresight with budgeting. He says, “If you don’t have any budget, I guarantee that you can just Google ‘how to budget,’ and greatly improve your financial situation. The same thing is true with foresight analytics. If you can download data and use some simple analysis to identify where the future is going, it will help you prioritize your investments for what types of products to invest in or what channels to get in.” For smaller businesses with less capital, setting aside a sum of money for a foresight consultancy is not possible. Figuring out which products to market to which consumer is a personal time and effort investment, but it will help eliminate costly promotion and production ventures in the future. The beauty of foresight analytics is that anyone can do it, you just have to use known market information available to you as well as search for and put together public information. Once the information has been put together, it can be a useful navigational tool. The trends of the graphs and charts will let you know which products work in which markets, giving you foresight of coming trends.
Collecting Current and Accurate Data
Multiple bureaus, such as the IMF, have extensive databases with information that has been compiled from past years which can be useful in order to predict future trends. In order to transform entrepreneurial insight into entrepreneurial foresight, Entrepreneur.com suggests three strategies:
- Use publicly available data
- Use desktop tools like Excel
- Be willing to pivot
After compiling the public data, it has to be put together and analyzed. Most standard computers come with some data analysis program, such as Excel, to arrange the information into a format that can be analyzed. After the information has been analyzed and a plan has been put in place, there has to be a fallback plan in case things do not work out as projected.
The biggest determining factor in whether foresight analysis will work is the accuracy of information. Building a database and analyzing it will not help anyone if the information is incorrect. William Bill from Wealth Design Group LLC believes market research done right is critical, “You have know which direction to travel and how fast to go. A good market research plan indicates where and who your customers are. It will also tell you when they are most likely and willing to purchase your goods or use your services.” Practice using internet resources such as census.gov and the IMF to guarantee accurate and current data.
Research is the best way to turn insight of current trends into foresight of future trends, setting your business up for maximal future success. Begin doing research, put it all together, and start building a plan to turn current potential into future profits. Share this on social media or comment on some of your best research and analyzing strategies down below!