Future scanning is not easy. We make educated guesses and adjust our tactics as things unfold.
Here are some of my favorite examples of scanning that weren’t quite on:
- Next Christmas the iPod will be finished, dead, gone kaput – Lord Alan Sugar, 2005
- The Internet would soon go spectacularly supernova and in 1996 catastrophically collapse – Robert Metcalfe, 3Com Digital Electronics Company Founder, 1995
- The Beatles have no future in show business. We don’t like their sounds, and guitar music is on the way out – Decca Records, 1962
- I think there is a world market for maybe five computers – IBM Chairman, 1943
- Remote shopping, while entirely feasible, will flop—because women like to get out of the house, like to handle merchandise, like to be able to change their minds – Time, 1966
- Rock ‘n Roll will be gone by June – Variety, 1955
- Television won’t last because people will soon get tired of staring at a plywood box every night – Darryl Zanuck, 20th Century Fox, 1946
- There is no chance that the iPhone will get any significant market share – Microsoft CEO, 2007
- A rocket will never be able to leave the earth’s atmosphere – New York Times, 1936
- There is no danger that Titanic will sink – Phillip Franklin, White Star Line VP, 1912
- There is no reason for any individual to have a computer in his home – President, Digital Equipment Corporation, 1977
The bottom line is this – no one is perfect. Do your best at scanning and create options for what to do as the trend develops. Don’t stick with one idea, be flexible.
I hope you enjoyed these examples. I’d love to hear from you in the comment section!