The tools used will be analysed as per the APIC notes (APIC 2013) and are broadly defined under the following headings. This review will focus on these topics and attempt to expand and examine these knowledge areas.
Blue Sky Thinking
Blue Sky thinking is defined in the notes as a condition with not a cloud in sight, endless opportunity and unlimited potential (APIC 2013)
The idea is formulated and developed in a perfect world and then the obstacles are approached as they present themselves.
The Collins English Dictionary defines it as thinking that is not grounded or in touch in the realities of the present.
Proponents of this theory claim it leads to innovation and attacking problems from a new angle, while critics dismiss it as a lazy way of thinking as the solutions cannot be successfully applied and are not grounded in reality.
The core idea behind environmental scanning is If you don’t adapt, you don’t endure (Associations Now, Dalton 2011) Environmental scanning responds to the information gathered by changing strategies and plans when the need arises. Traditional long-range planning models, with their inward focus and reliance on historical data, do not encourage decision makers to anticipate environmental changes and assess their impact on the organization (Cope, 1981).
Brown and Weiner (1985) define environmental scanning as "a kind of radar to scan the world systematically and signal the new, the unexpected, the major and the minor"
The environmental scanning process encompasses several steps. The first step in establishing environmental scanning is to decide which level of scanning commitment is best for your organisation at this time: ad hoc, periodic, or continuous. Depending on the organisations needs and they will need to select one of the methods or a combination of them i.e.: periodic scanning with adhoc scanning as circumstances dictate.
The second step is to gather information about the world in which you operate, including information about the economy, government, laws and demographic factors such as population size and distribution.
Scanning Strategy and Monitoring System ( Marc K Peter / FutureScreening.com)
The Convergent Divergent Process Model
The Chatterjee and Nanmkervis (2006) ‘Asian Management Convergent-Divergent Model’ is a management tool for developing international strategies by analysing three main perspectives.
Convergent thinking is the type of thinking that focuses on coming up with the single, well-established answer to a problem. It is oriented toward deriving the single best, or most often correct answer to a question. Convergent thinking emphasizes speed, accuracy, and logic and focuses on recognizing the familiar, reapplying techniques, and accumulating stored information. It is most effective in situations where an answer readily exists and simply needs to be either recalled or worked out through decision making strategies. A critical aspect of convergent thinking is that it leads to a single best answer, leaving no room for ambiguity. In this view, answers are either right or wrong. The solution that is derived at the end of the convergent thinking process is the best possible answer the majority of the time.
Divergent thinking is a thought process or method used to generate creative ideas by exploring many possible solutions. It is often used in conjunction with convergent thinking, which follows a particular set of logical steps to arrive at one solution, which in some cases is a "correct" solution. Divergent thinking typically occurs in a spontaneous, free-flowing manner, such that many ideas are generated in an emergent cognitive fashion. Many possible solutions are explored in a short amount of time, and unexpected connections are drawn. After the process of divergent thinking has been completed, ideas and information are organized and structured using convergent