Businesses handle change every day – new clients, new suppliers, new tools.  Successful businesses have processes and systems to manage these day to day operational changes.

But what about the changes businesses need to make to survive and thrive in this new world of disruptive innovation?

What about the changes businesses need to make to be sustainable, to grow, to provide the owners, staff and customers with what they want into the future?

Does your business have the skills, knowledge, processes to successfully manage these types of change?

Businesses today must be nimble and agile. Able to change quickly whilst remaining true to their core values, to what is the true purpose of the business.

For some business owners and managers this can seem overwhelming.

There are two key habits that you can start to do today to set you on a path to strive and thrive in this new world. 

1. Continuously and actively scan your business environment

 What are your customers saying? What are your competitors doing? Read industry and business articles.

When you read the newspaper or look at your Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, keep asking the question – how could this impact my business? 

Is there an opportunity here, or a potential threat? 

The broader you cast your net for information, the better you will be able to decide what changes you may need to make.

2. Define your business future

What will your business be in 3, 6, 12 months, 2-5 years?

Take a people centered and whole of business approach. 

What will your staff, customers, suppliers be doing in that future? What will the systems, processes, people be like? 

 Look at all the pieces that make up your business. Make it real and tangible.  Talk with your staff, your customers, suppliers, your mates, other business people. Build a clear picture of the future.

This is not the formal strategy document that sits on a shelf and is looked at once a year. This is creating a living understanding, amongst all your “stakeholders”, of your business future.  

It is important to continuously revisit and update your “picture of the future”. Whether it be in staff meetings, manager meetings or over Friday afternoon drinks (where we’ve seen some great ideas evolve).

In future blogs we will give you ideas about how to create “Future Walls” and other ways to capture your Defined Future. We will discuss how to manage the changes needed to achieve the future you define. 

Would you like your business to thrive and survive?

We can provide practical help to define your future, design, and manage the changes required to achieve your future.

Some of the best ideas for your business’s future may be in the minds of your staff.

But how do you tap into those ideas?

Over the years suggestion boxes in staff kitchens have worked to some extent. But these do not allow ideas to be built upon and expanded. There is limited visibility of suggestions by others in the business.

Staff engaging in the business by collaborating using a future wall.

Use a Future Wall

If you have renovated a house or built a new house you may have created a “mood board” with pictures, cloth swatches, paint samples etc that you might use.

A Future Wall is similar. 

It is a place, physical and/or virtual, where you and your staff post ideas about potential futures for your organisation. Whether it be pictures, articles, quotes, ideas, goals. 

Your Future Wall will be unique just as your business is unique.

No two Future Walls are the same. It will evolve and develop. 

For some businesses it is only used during strategic planning periods. While for others it becomes part of their day to day culture with a constant gathering of ideas to shape the business.

A Future Wall may be used company-wide or just in certain sections of the business.

Why Have a Future Wall?

Future Walls are a fun way to engage with your staff, especially during times of major change or planning.  It’s an opportunity for staff to think about your business creatively.

You might be surprised the talent that you will uncover.  Staff across the business can come together to share ideas and make suggestions that may not be in their “area”. 

This can help break down silos between teams.

A Future Wall can encourage continuous improvement and innovation. You can gather ideas that you and your leadership team may not have thought of. 

How Do You Create a Future Wall?

Your Future Wall can be physical, for example a pinboard/whiteboard in the staff room. Or it can be virtual. There are multiple online tools which can be used as forums. You can also set up a chat space on your intranet. Or you may choose to do both. 

The physical and the virtual Future Wall’s each have their own benefits. 

A physical wall in a location regularly visited by all staff keeps it front of mind. If you have multiple sites, you might have multiple Future Walls, one on each site.

A virtual wall is great for businesses with staff working remotely.  It also provides a place for staff to post materials they find on the internet. 

You might want to have both a physical and a virtual.

Making your Future Wall a success!

The key to the success of your Future Wall is creating excitement for participating and shared ownership of the wall across the organisation. 

  • In the early days this may be achieved with fun competitions. For example, offering movie tickets for the most creative, or most original idea. 
  • Encourage managers to include time at the wall in their team meetings.
  • Set up a team with people from multiple areas and levels of the business to gather and collate the information posted on the wall. This can then be communicated back to everyone.

    For the Future Wall to be sustainable staff need to see that their ideas are being considered and used to shape the future. Again, this can be by leadership stand ups at the wall and leadership communications on how an idea has been adopted.


Would you like to encourage your staff to become more engaged in the business and collaborate on how to build into an even better business than it is today? Create a Future Wall.

If you would like help setting up a Future Wall that fits your unique business give the E2E The Change Agency Team a call.