The Thinking Ahead Newsletter brings you regular updates on how to be fit for the future in a fast-changing world.

Here are some recent articles:

  • Let’s Get Digital!
    For the last three years, KPMG’s annual “Keeping Us Up At Night” survey reported on what Australian business leaders consider their biggest challenges and issues. The same topic ranked #1 for all three years (pre-pandemic!): digital transformation. Even the pandemic didn’t slow this trend. In fact, it’s the opposite, with many leaders saying it accelerated ...
  • Customers Want More For Less
    When we first moved to Australia in the 1970s, we kept in touch with relatives in Sri Lanka with the occasional long-distance phone call. They were expensive, so we four kids all lined up by the phone, spoke very fast for our allotted couple of minutes, and quickly passed over the phone to the next ...
  • Customer Priorities Have Changed
    When I speak to healthcare groups about the future, I often talk about the use of robots for care and support. For example, the Paro robot seal in aged care facilities provides support and comfort for older people, and “Stevie” is an interactive robot that’s brightening up aged care homes: Although robots have continued to find ...
  • Better Than Referrals – Share the Customer Experience
    A crisis like a global pandemic makes everybody re-assess and re-evaluate what’s important to them. And that includes your customers. So don’t assume you know what they want – make sure you continue to keep in touch with them. This is not just for loyalty purposes. It can also be a valuable source of new customers ...
  • Light the Fire of Innovation
    All the disruption we experienced in 2020 – and will continue to face in 2021 – means we need to be constantly innovating to adapt to change. Innovation isn’t something you can leave to an R&D team, and it isn’t something you do “when things quieten down”. It’s simply about being proactive when dealing with change. Innovation ...
  • Embrace Chaos
    If you’re picking apples from a tree, how would you choose the best apples? You might decide based on colour, shape, size, texture, and other physical attributes. But research from University College London suggests we subconsciously also factor in the ease of reaching the apple. The low-hanging fruit appears more attractive. We’re wired to take the ...
  • Measure COI, Not Just ROI
    In March 2015, almost six years ago, Bill Gates, former Microsoft CEO and now one of the world’s leading philanthropists, delivered his sixth TED Talk, this time on the topic, “The next outbreak? We’re not ready”. In his presentation, Gates described a global pandemic scenario that matched almost exactly the COVID-19 pandemic five years later. He ...
  • Adapt, Don’t Simplify
    As part of my mathematics degree at the University of Western Australia, we calculated how objects in space – such as planets, asteroids, and moons – would interact with each other, based on their mass, velocity, and other factors. We assumed these objects were perfect spheres, which was a reasonable assumption that allowed us to ...
  • Be So Good They Can’t Ignore You
    I grew up in the 1980s, and my favourite actor at the time was Steve Martin (My all-time favourite actor is Humphrey Bogart, but that’s another story, and he was way before my time). When Steve Martin was once asked for the secret of his success, he said this: “Be so good they can’t ignore you.” As we ...
  • What “Survival of the Fittest” Means (It’s Probably Not What You Think)
    Unless you’re an evolutionary biologist, you probably aren’t an expert in the theory of evolution. For most people, all they know about it is the name Charles Darwin, the occasional debate about whether it’s true (spoiler alert: it is), and some vague idea about “survival of the fittest”. When talking about change, Darwin famously said: “It is ...
Thinking Ahead Newsletter