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Visualisation to actualisation

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August 17

Femke Storm

Click! Welcome to our future...

It’s still 869 days till January 1st 2021 but we already know exactly what Lab Rooms looks like that new year's morning. We recently had our Photo of the Future taken with our friends from Peak Value. A inspiring, enlightening experience we wish to every entrepreneurial professional.  

We got in touch with Marcel Broersma and Guido Mangert through mutual connections and got really interested in their photo of the future concept. A 4-6 week program that helps entrepreneurs focus, visualize and flourish by making the future tangible. Being a fast-growing company, with all aspects – charming and less charming – that come along with that we just don’t have the time (or the patience to be honest) and our agenda’s felt just too unpredictable to commit to a multiple week program. That’s when we got to dream with Marcel and Guido: what if we could do this Lab Room style… Compress the most important parts for us entrepreneurs in just one day, with a tangible outcome and possibly some follow up meetings to keep the focus.  

We challenged Peak Value to try this and they did… on us!  

So what did we do? Here’s what happened: 

To hit the ground running that day we had to do some preparation, separately. Through four questionnaires our vision, goals and envisioned KPI’s for 2021 where gathered. Point for point they were shown on the big screen. But not before we were energized and kickstarted by a serious Ping-Pong challenge (won by Femke 4-1 btw).  

The data they gathered showed how aligned we are on some aspect, but also how unaligned we were on others. We were forced to make decisions. And we were challenged, inspired, stretched… “is it ambitious enough”, “isn’t that too ambitious maybe”, “you really believe you can 10x that in just a few years, ok!”. This session was intensive, but took out a lot of unclarities. This fast-forward into the future got us in the right mindset to make a concrete action plan to reach our ambitious goals.  

To prevent the photo of the future to become a plan dust away in a drawer – we were already pushed to get out there with it. By calling employees, customers, suppliers and other acquaintances we got a new perspective on our strengths and challenges and got the opportunity to involve internal stakeholders. Got that thing rolling along the way too.  

With the outside-in input on a pile of post its, combined with our own input - from operational to do’s to wildest dreams - we could get started with timelining all kinds of action points. Creating a virtual journey with actionable, concrete steps towards the future. By dividing it into four categories: Strategy, Management & Organization, Finance & Marketing Peak Value made sure we did not only focus on one part of our business: scaling it as fast as we’re aiming to, you need to focus on all aspects. They introduced fun aspects, handy regular action points to keep finance smooth and focus point to keep our culture distinctive. Their extensive experience as entrepreneurs, as investors and as business strategists was of great value to us. They exactly knew when to hit the pedal and when to slow us down, when to speed us up and when to have us rethink our plans.  

Martijn Peak Value

It was an intensive day that resulted into a detailed plan to achieve some quit ambitious goals, more ambitious on some points then we imagined upfront. The magic: more ambitious and more confident to reach those goals with a serious, extremely detailed action plan.  

The homework we got was to involve all employees in this and gather their input. The impact that this visualization of our ambitious goals had on the team was unexpected: they got energized, inspired, enthusiastic and came with even more action steps to reach it. Some critical question made it a serious discussion about where we are heading together, since it’s the whole team that makes Lab Rooms Lab Rooms. Now we had everyone on board. Back to business is what happens a lot after sessions like this.  

But with our photo of the future daily visible there’s no hiding for us. And for me and Martijn it’s a “stick behind the door”  to keep on pushing the ball forward. It saves a lot of time debating, discussing and meeting since most decision where already made that day in Rotterdam. It guides us through the months and keeps us focussing on the goals for 2021.  

Conclusion: Experiment validated. 

Both Peak Value as we as the “tester” where surprised by the impact the day made. That’s why we decided to team up and make this accelerating experience available to other entrepreneurs as well. We decided to co-create the Photo of the Future Lab Room for other founders with fierce ambitions. On September 19th we’ll host the first Photo of the Future Lab Room for Founders at our Rotterdam Location. Want to know more? Or curious what our photo looks like? Just get in touch with us!  

If you'd like to know more about how you can be a part of Photo of the Future click here.