Daily Inspiration: “When the future is fuzzy……take the long view!”


“When the future is fuzzy……take the long view!” – Futurist Jim Carroll

The thing about being a futurist is … you have to talk about the future.

And inevitably, as each new year begins to approach, people being to turn their minds to … the future. The result is that I get calls from the media, questions from clients, and inquiries about potential gigs.

With that in mind, I decided yesterday morning to start a new series, ‘23 Trends for 2023“. You’ll be able to find it, updated each day, at https://2023.jimcarroll.com. It will also be on my blog, as well as the 12 social media and related channels I post my stuff to each day. (Yes, for real!) (And yes, this Daily Inspiration goes out each day to all those channels!). It’s modelled on something I did similar in late 2018 called, well, you guessed it, 19 Trends for 2019 -> https://2019.jimcarroll.com

Here’s how I start the summary page:

The future is a vast and complex issue, and one that covers so many potential topics.

Since I speak in virtually every industry, from agriculture to healthcare, banking to technology, transportation to energy, it’s always been difficult to come up with a good concise end of years trends preview list!

And so this year, I’ve done something different! Structure! 23 Trends for 2023!

It’s a grab bag of trends to get you thinking. I’ll post a new trend each work day to the end of the month.

Trend number 1, to arrive sometime later today, will have to do with the arrival of accelerated ‘techno-skepticism.” As I note in the opening

What went wrong? As always, Silicon Valley and technology boosters got too far ahead of themselves with hype and hysteria and needed a reality check. Having worked around and in technology for 40 years, I’ve bene here before

I really believe, in the cold heart light of layoffs in Silicon Valley, the collapse of crypto, delays in the arrival of real self-driving technology, and more, that many people and organizations are once again finding a newfound skepticism about technology, trends, and promises about the future.

Which leads directly to the significance of today’s quote – because it is exactly the wrong thing to do!

I’ve been here before – and know that the arrival of sudden skepticism often causes individuals to lose sight of the long term. This becomes particularly true when volatility and uncertainty rule your approach to every single working day – there is a complete and utter lack of clarity on what might come next. Which also argues for taking a long view.

So much of my time on stage is spent on the issue of timing the future – often, it’s not getting the trend right that matters, it’s getting the timing right that really matters!

Daily Inspiration: “You’ll get the future right if you get the timing right!”

Remember – the key is my list of “5 Rules to Determine the Arrival of the Future”

  1. The future happens, but eventually
  2. The future is usually slow, and then, instant
  3. Technology puts great uncertainty on the accuracy of rules 1 and 2
  4. Accelerating science can suddenly make your previous future estimate terribly inaccurate
  5. Just when you think you’ve got the future all figured out, kids come along

And when it comes to the long view, in light of new uncertainty with number 3, number 1 takes greater priority!

Take the long view!


THE FUTURE BELONGS TO THOSE WHO ARE FAST features the best of the insight from Jim Carroll’s blog, in which he
covers issues related to creativity, innovation and future trends.