The Future Belongs to the Fast

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Faster is the new fast,” said noted futurist Jim Carroll, addressing attendees during the annual meeting of the 2014 Flavor and Extract Manufacturers Association. “While people overestimate the change that will occur two years into the future, they underestimate the change that will occur in the next 10 years.”

Taking examples from other industries, including tech, Carroll noted that innovators thrive in uncertainty—periods of time in which non-innovators tend to defer or delay decisions for fear of failure. Those companies that have seen the greatest success, he argued, made big decisions in a crisis. Big decisions, then, are synonymous with innovators. These big decisions, said Carroll, lead to new primary revenue streams. To illustrate, he pointed out that about 60% of Apple’s revenue is generated from products that did not exist just a few years ago.

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