A\D\V\I\S\E\ is about discovering, designing, developing and capturing the value that any organization will benefit from when embracing the necessary transformation journey towards FutureFitness. Following SGA’s proven A\D\V\I\S\E\ methodology, we collaborate to diagnose your current position, sharpen and visualize your success, prototype and pilot initiatives and co-create intelligent paths to bridge the gap between the present and the envisioned future. Even though the method may be perceived as a linear process, in practice it will require iteratively jumping back and forth between the different phases described and will differentiate between incremental and more radical initiatives

The A\D\V\I\S\E\ process: A = A\c\e\r\, D = Diagnose, V = Visualise, I = Innovate, S = Strategise, E = Engage
© Sustainable Growth Associates GmbH

ACER! Key Stakeholders

For change to happen, an individual and later an organisation, an industry sector or a whole industry must AWAKE! first, prior to being able to COMPREHEND! why change is necessary, to then hopefully EMBRACE! the need for change in order to RESPOND! in taking the first of many steps to follow. The successful “acering” of key stakeholders is probably the most essential step of the A\D\V\I\S\E\ process. It is unlikely that the already “acered” initiator and/or key decision-maker will generate momentum for the transformation journey ahead all alone. Even a company owner or a board member needs to convince and motivate the organisation’s key stakeholders. Check out our home page where we describe the A\C\E\R\ process in detail.

DIAGNOSE! Your Position

This step is about understanding the CONTEXT an organization operates in, the COGNITION external stakeholders place on it, and its actual CONDITION. CONTEXT comprises both the inside-out view (= the organization’s own perspective) and the outside-out view (= the perspective of external experts) when analyzing relevant external opportunities and threats. COGNITION is the outside-in analysis of the organization’s perception. It answers the question “What assets and liabilities do external stakeholders see when assessing the organization’s governance & leadership, products & services, processes, communication, DNA & culture, and finance? CONDITION is the inside-in analysis of the organization’s strengths and weaknesses. It provides the necessary assessment of the organization’s actual capabilities and its readiness to survive in VUCAD times. Overall, DIAGNOSE! provides crucial input for the next, probably most exciting step of A\D\V\I\S\E\.

VISUALISE! Your Future

This step is about the organization’s envisioned future based on a broader PURPOSE. The key question to be answered first is: Why does this organization exist, and why will it be needed in a sustainable future? Elaborating an organization’s PURPOSE can be difficult and painful, but the effort will pay off. Both a powerful PURPOSE and a compelling VISION are vital for future success. From a systems perspective, VISUALISE! integrates a variety of concepts and sources, such as our visioning framework, the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and the Future-Fit Business Benchmark (FFBB). All aspects considered, VISUALISE! demands the elaboration of the future an organization desires, to define the role it wants to play in the process, and how it needs to advance to become able to fill this role.

INNOVATE! For Success

This step closes the gap between where we are (DIAGNOSE!) and where we want to be (VISUALISE!), while at the same time acknowledging the limitations of the broader systems surrounding us. INNOVATE! is about backcasting from the desired future position, having the Sustainability Principles in mind and understood as part of a framework for action and definition of success. Exponential technologies play a vital role here, because they can open up new pathways for all organizational areas and fields of activity.

STRATEGISE! Your Approach

While INNOVATE! provides the organisation’s options for negotiating a transformation, STRATEGISE! calls for the  identification and prioritization of strategic initiatives for going forward. This step of the A\D\V\I\S\E\ process delivers the required short-term and long-term, top-line and bottom-line goals, and it determines the key steps towards them. Each step must at least meet the following three key criteria: 1) leading in the right direction, 2) offering a flexible platform to take the subsequent steps, and 3) providing an attractive Return on Investment (ROI). The result of the steps so far: DIAGNOSE!, VISUALISE!, INNOVATE! and STRATEGISE! can now be consolidated in the organisation’s masterplan describing the executable pathway towards FutureFitness.

ENGAGE! Your Transformation

After having diagnosed the current position and having a vivid description of the desired future at hand, the options developed and the strategy agreed upon, it all comes down to “getting the job done”, to ENGAGE! Your Transformation. Implementing the masterplan starts in waves, each of them focusing on a given theme, building on the initiatives developed, and manage execution performance guiding an organization towards sustainability. The organization is now on its journey to become truly fit for the future. And if done properly, applying context-driven and purposeful leadership and innovation, and considering the socio-ecological boundaries, there is no stopping it.