Prince once sang, “I’ve seen the future and it will be.” That prediction, from the “Batman” soundtrack, is about as concrete as most prognosticators will get at the moment.
What the Future Pandemic edition, isn’t about telling you what the future will be. It’s about getting you to think about what it could be — and how you and your company can prepare for a range of potential outcomes.
Here we present three vignettes — Postcards from the future, if you will. They are not meant as predictions or formal forecasts. Rather, they’re a narrative starting point for a discussion about the future of financial services. That said, our in-house futurists have deemed them “scary but plausible.”
We shared them with experts in payment systems, retail banking, inequality and consumer financial health. They then, gave us their thoughts on how the future might unfold under each of those situations.
The three represent a range from hopeful to woeful. The first postcard is sent from a future we might try to aim for, with smart investment and bold moves to get the economy back on track. The second comes from a future where missteps were made along the way and those play out with drawn-out consequences. The final presents us with a path that is both avoidable and dire.
The future that will be… well, we shall see. But we can’t wait and see. All of us need to be thinking about and taking a systematic, data-driven approach to planning for plausible scenarios. And hopefully we won’t wind up in the one future Prince does lay out, “I’ve seen the future, and boy it’s rough.”