There are some days that I have to pinch myself; when I cant believe how lucky we are to work with such inspiring and interesting clients (and obviously how lucky they are to have us on their side!).

We do lots of future thinking in the agency – in fact pretty much everything we do is about creating future success for clients – but normally our timeframes are 3-5 years. So, it’s been quite an interesting and enlightening project to define a future strategy that’s based on what may happen in 2024.

10 years seems no time at all, but when you think about the pace of change over the last 10 years, suddenly it’s a little scarier.

Go back to 2004 when social media barely existed, showrooming and the ROPO effect were phrases yet to be coined, the iPhone was still a figment of Steve Jobs’ imagination and retailers were scrabbling for the best sites not frantically divesting of leases.

How times have changed.

So how do you go about planning your future – creating a vision for 10 years ahead? At face value it turns out to be remarkably simple…

Firstly engage some interesting futurologists in a variety of fields to give you a viewpoint on the social, political, economic and technological trends. Then throw in a perspective on the future of retail and the workplace. Finally add some talented forward thinking people who can put aside the prejudices of the past. Accomplish all of this and it is perfectly possible to write a vision for your business in 2024.

Of course this isn’t a magic formula. The reality of the process is steeped in a formidable amount of data, insight and learnings, carefully balanced with an experienced gut instinct.

Being able to listen and learn from trends and to then create a vision for 2024 has taken some considerable effort, some leaps of faith and big dollop of imagination, but I think between us we have created an amazing future for our client.

Of course the hard work really starts here, and we now need a business strategy to deliver this vision.

I’m now looking forward to 2024; where retail is even more vibrant, and realising one of my personal ambitions for the sector – that truly seamless retailing is the only future. Where practically everything that moves will be 3D printed, where workforces will more frequently congregate at cyber HQs.

It’s a delight to be working with such forward thinking clients. And I’m now bracing our team for our own vision for 2024.