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Visioning our own entrepreneurial future

In 2005, the SAIE broadened the vision of the Institute and our work through the strategic process of “preferred futuring”.

What is Preferred Futuring?

Preferred Futuring was created by Ronald Lippitt about 25 years ago in his efforts to help graduate students breakout from their day-to-day, unproductive problem solving techniques. With Preferred Futuring he actually helped them “envision” the solutions they preferred. Lippitt made an important distinction between a preferred future and what he termed a predicted future. A preferred future, he said, was the future you desire to achieve. A predicted future was one that experts predict. These two futures might well be distinctly different from each other.

A predicted future is more likely to reflect the defined aims of a traditional strategic planning process a Preferred Futuring creates a vision that can be put into action through a planning process. Preferred futuring is not necessarily better than strategic planning but it is a different approach to planning. Indeed, it is increasingly common to engage in preferred futuring as part of a strategic planning process. (Achieving a Desired Future: Using the Preferred Futuring Process –Richard M. Dougherty, Virtual Reference Desk Conference paper, 2002)

Preferred Futuring is highly structured, but at the same time, it is also a tractable process. It can be used for many purposes. It is also a very robust process in the sense that it always produces energy and enthusiasm for moving ahead among those involved in the process. What is really exciting about Preferred Futuring is that it gets staff and stakeholders engaged and excited, thereby really jumpstarting the planning process.

The South African Institute of Entreprenuership’s Preferred Future

It is 2015, and…

SAIE is financially prosperous, with substantial reserves and sustainable income streams. It has 4visions focused on the key areas of Research &Development; Marketing; Service and Training; and International Outreach. The international division has adapted and translated the materials into 100 languages and their use is licensed to various parties, producing a sustainable income that makes an important contribution to the SAIE’s cash flow. We have offices on 5 continents and rapid sales growth in China. We have an active board of high-profile, energetic, committed individuals and patrons. The SAIE has a diversified range of products for various industries and sectors, including clothing & textiles, tourism, fisheries, craft, maths & science, IT, health and hospitality.

All the SAIE’s products are accredited and the BEST Game in a box is the most popular game in history – a must-have for every family and school worldwide. Interactive and web-based versions of our products are available and sales of South African crafts have sky-rocketed worldwide as a result of Ag Shame to Hey-Wow! The Point and Say curriculum is used in Grades 1, 2 & 3. SAIE is widely recognised as a world leader in the production and development of learning resources and BusinessVENTURES is the preferred product of the Department of Education.

The SAIE’s diverse team is recognised as an outstanding example of a transformed South African organisation with an internal culture that is conducive to effectiveness, efficiency and creativity. The SAIE is known for its cutting-edge innovation; its advice and opinions are sought after by UYF, DOE, Dept of Agriculture, DTI, etc. It undertakes regular impact evaluations which demonstrate its solid track record.

We have the appropriate infrastructure, support systems and contractual arrangements, as well as a clearly defined mission, goals and objectives.

Finally, because of the SAIE’s efforts, there is no extreme poverty in SA and an average poverty rate of 2% as the Millennium Development Goals is achieved.

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