Joel Barker

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Strategy Coaching

Joel Barker is an independent scholar and futurist. He is known around the world as "the Paradigm Man" because of his videos on paradigms. He also was one of the first corporate educators, starting in 1982, to emphasize the importance of visions for all organizations. He is presently studying complex ecological systems for their lessons about innovation and collaboration.

Coaching Approach

Too many executives leap from intuition to strategic planning without exploring the terrain of the new direction. In his work, Joel Barker coaches leaders to add a layer of thinking before they start their planning. He calls this process strategic exploration.

Strategic exploration requires understanding the paradigms within which the organization must compete. In general, leaders focus closely on the business at hand. Much of Joel's work involves exchanging this tunnel vision for a kind of "funnel vision" which takes ideas through the stages of intuitive judgment, strategic exploration and strategic assessment before strategic planning even begins.

When unexpected change occurs, organizations that have not planned for such possibilities retreat to the prevailing paradigm and willingly give up market share rather than deal with reality. Joel Barker tells leaders that 60 percent of their time should be focused on the future. No one will thank them for taking care of today, if they fail to provide for tomorrow.