The University of Houston’s graduate program in Foresight recently completed a research study with RevUnit, a leading digital transformation partner for many large enterprise retail clients.
The partnership was designed to educate RevUnit leaders in the mechanics of the Foresight methodology while applying them, in order to examine and better understand the potential futures of the disruptive and ever-changing Retail landscape. It was also an experiment to see how efficiently and quickly a forward-thinking organization can use Foresight methodologies to develop meaningful insights about a range of plausible potential futures.
Together, RevUnit and members of the University of Houston Foresight Program produced a step-by-step case study that demonstrates how the Foresight model can be tangibly applied to explore the future of field-based retail workforces.
Brian Hughes, RevUnit CFO and a member of the Association of Professional Futurists, said the project has deepened RevUnit’s understanding and insight into the future of retail.
“In casting a vision for the future of their business, enterprises need a complete understanding of the potential futures they face,” Hughes said. “It’s not about fortune telling or prophesying — rather, we’re exploring a full range of possible futures to inform how to protect against emerging disruptive threats in the retail space. Foresight is a critical tool in the digital transformation toolbelt.”
The Foresight Graduate Program at the University of Houston helps equip professional futurists to prepare organizations for transformational change — compared to traditional forecasting models that assume incremental change. Graduates of the program leverage systems thinking and analysis of environmental factors to increase the chance of achieving the most desirable futures.
By partnering with RevUnit, the University of Houston Foresight Program gained valuable insight into how the Foresight model can be applied to better map the potential futures in the disruptive, technology-driven retail sector.
Dr. Andy Hines is Foresight Graduate Program Coordinator and lecturer in the UH College of Technology Department of Human Development and Consumer Science. A seasoned consulting, academic, and organizational futurist, Dr. Hines brings a wealth of diverse experience helping major corporations and organizations of all sizes to prepare for the future.
“The whole idea is to prepare professionals to make more creative, innovative, and forward-looking decisions,” said Dr. Hines. “This project with RevUnit reinforced our belief that the tools of Foresight can be taught efficiently to progressive organizations who seek to ground innovative work in a better understanding of what tomorrow could look like.”
RevUnit is an award-winning digital strategy and product studio that partners with some of the world’s largest enterprises to make more well-informed decisions about the future of their workplace, workforce, and the digital tools that empower and enable their people to work in new ways. Leveraging human-centric design, strategic vision, and emerging technology, RevUnit builds digital solutions and strategies that unlock productivity and drive employee engagement.
For more information about the study, contact Brad Ducey at [email protected].
For information about the Foresight Program at the University of Houston, contact Dr. Andy Hines at 832-367-5575 or [email protected].