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Sat. February 04, 2023
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Strategic Planning: Interview with Patricia Lustig
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Would you provide some general advice for organizations seeking to gather data for use in their strategic planning?

  • Think about what you will use the data FOR. 
  • Get the data that you need, not just the data that is easy to gather.
  • Gather external as well as internal data.
  • Check your assumptions about the data – we all have cognitive bias.
  • Look for evidence, especially disconfirming evidence.
  • Remember that a trend is a trend until it bends.
  • We are facing VUCA times; gather data from new sources as well.

What are some potential pitfalls organizations can encounter when analyzing data?

  • Not checking assumptions
  • Not gathering the data you need – you need to be sure you are measuring the right things
  • Not removing bias
  • Not checking the validity of your sources of data in changing times
  • Not including new sources of data in changing times

In today’s environment that can change quickly, from a data perspective, what major areas would you recommend for organizations to focus on to optimize their chances for success?

  • Consider leading data as well as lagging data.  While leading data is often more difficult to gather, you need both.
  • Think about sources of error – are there potential systemic errors in the data you collect?
  • Question your organisational assumptions – these can skew the data you collect.
  • Check the validity of your data – is it representative?  Is it recent?
  • Check whether there are signs that things are changing… do your assumptions hold?  What other data sources can you include to improve the quality of your data?

How will participants of your Master Class at the upcoming ASP Conference benefit from attending?

  • It is an opportunity to explore with your peers, the role of data in strategy formulation and to improve the strategy in your organisation by improving the quality of the data underpinning it.

Patricia Lustig is a widely recognised and talented practitioner in Strategic Foresight and strategy development, future thinking and innovation.  She advises at all levels, working from factory floor to boardroom, using Foresight, horizon scanning and futures tools to help organisations develop insight into emerging trends, build a strategy based on this insight and then implement the changes needed to carry the strategy out. She has written numerous articles and is co-author of the business handbooks Beyond Crisis: Achieving Renewal in a Turbulent World, published by Wiley in 2010 and Here be Dragons published in 2012 by Choir Press. 


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