The one-sentence summary

Scenario planning taken from the business world can help people plan their personal lives.


  • Many people manage brilliantly at work but allow chaos in their personal lives – scenario planning taken from the business world can help.
  • Futurescaping helps individuals plan the future with the same rigour as a corporation.
  • We need to accept that the future is not perfectly predetermined but is shaped by our actions and external factors.
  • It is possible to take how companies plan and overlay human drivers that influence every decision we make.
  • The scenario planning process involves:

1.     Identify your question (Should I adopt a dog or not?)

2.    Identify the drivers that will have an impact (Leisure time, social life, etc.)

3.    Plot the top two on two axes (if the second axis is unclear, look for the superdriver – the winner of the others after careful examination)

4.    Analyse each quadrant against the most important factors (career, travel, social, financial, health, emotional, etc.)

  • Combining complexity is an important feature because it isn’t easy.
  • It’s not about being right – it’s about being ready.


  • Delphic research involves gathering a group of experts on a particular subject – it doesn’t always work..
  • Wildcards are low-probability high-impact events, like Nassim Taleb’s Black Swans. We need to allow for them.
  • Why does it matter? is a crucial question which many don’t address properly. Answering it helps enormously in futurescaping.
  • Doing the exercise forces individuals to examine whether they are posing the right question. It also exposes the most relevant criteria, and can force a complete rethink if it becomes apparent that the drivers originally chosen are subsequently found to be less relevant than at first thought.
  • The benefits of increasing your Future Quotient are:

1.     Broadening your perspective

2.    Getting the objective habit

3.    Becoming more self-aware

4.    Knowing your place (where you fit in the world)

5.     Filtering information more smartly and effectively

6.    Fluency to understand how things interconnect

7.     Limiting fear and managing uncertainty


  • Those who haven’t thought about their future will find it most useful.