Parallel Perspectives – Our Tool for Trend Immersion

February, 2018

When you’re in the business of innovation, being up to date with what’s happening in the world is absolutely key. In order to help our clients with the best innovations and strategies, I – and many of my colleagues – spend a serious amount of time deep diving into new trends, developments and innovations to get a grip on where things are headed.

Insight and inspiration

A typical Elemental project starts with a tough strategic question from the client, followed by an in-depth exploration of the challenge. This phase is all about getting “insight and inspiration”. For each project, trend research is part of this exploration. This involves both scanning the online space and going into the world to experience developments in real life. But aside from doing this ourselves, we believe including our clients in this step is key in making our projects successful. Often, they have been thinking about their challenge for weeks or even months and have defined their challenge in detail. It is challenging for them to break away from it and open up to new ideas and opportunities. That is why we organise Parallel Perspectives, a full-day immersion workshop, as part of the insight & inspiration phase.

Parallel Perspectives

During the Parallel Perspectives we take clients on a full-day road trip to visit various companies and experts. Our bold team of expert connectors takes our client’s challenge apart and searches for new angles (perspectives! ha!) to approach it. We seek relevant inspiration in parallel industries by connecting with thought-leaders, visiting frontrunners and studying best practices. They find the best, most innovative, most inspiring companies to offer new perspectives and insights and open up our minds: For Westland Kaas we visited soap makers in London to learn about the art of retailing by stimulating all senses. With Heineken we visited Denim City and talked about how to take their craft (brewing beer) to the modern age with denim brand Denham. The best findings often come from the most surprising corners.

New energy and ideas

For me, Parallel Perspectives are often the highlight of a project. These days typically leave me tired yet completely energised, my head filled with inspiration and my notebook full of ideas. For clients, Parallel Perspectives might be even more impactful. It allows them to break with their daily business, approach their own challenges in a new way and see new opportunities. A great start of a successful project, ready to co-create new ideas and solutions.


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