Foresight Styles Assessment: Testing a New Tool for Consulting Futurists

by Jay E. Gary


Futurists need reliable tools to measure the future-readiness of individuals and teams. This paper examines Dian’s Foresight Styles Assessment (FSA) to determine whether there is sufficient empirical support for its six proposed styles of foresight: Futurist, Activist, Opportunist, Flexist, Equilibrist, and Reactionist. Factor analysis was used to examine a sample of 3,154 knowledge workers to reveal a four factor solution of Framer, Adapter, Tester, and Reactor. The first and last factors partially matched Dian’s original conceptualization of Futurist and Reactionist. The four new factors, when taken together, explained 41.72% of the variance with scale reliability ranging from .66 to .89. Item analysis eliminated 19 questions from the FSA that had relatively lower correlations with items in their set. The refined 26-item FSA is a valid and reliable instrument with construct validity, although further efforts could be undertaken to locate Dian’s original factors.(continue…)

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