First of all, let me tell you what is meant by the questions in the quiz. They are constructed as follows: “In your opinion, what are the top five trends impacting your field?” “In your opinion, what are the top ten trends impacting your field?” Finally, “In your opinion, what are the top twenty trends impacting your field?”
The first item on the list is “The Top Five Trends in Social Innovation.” What do these mean to me? To me, they represent an overall trend across the various types of social change and innovation that are occurring. These include the ways people interact on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, FourSquare, and the many other websites and online services that people are connecting with each day. They also encompass changes that happen on a macro scale by political and environmental factors.
Now let me give you the list. The first item is “The Top Five Trends in Social Innovation.” This can be broken down into five categories or segments. These include public goods and services, which are delivered directly to consumers; technological developments that are beneficial to consumers; business development that create employment and new jobs; regulatory frameworks and reforms; and economic development which boost productivity and income levels. These need careful attention because some segments might be growing too fast while others are likely shrinking. It will take an analysis of the overall economy to determine where these trends fit within the overall picture.
The second item on the list is “The Top Ten Questions Filling the Needs of the Social Enterprise.” This again breaks down into five categories or segments. The first two segments are “People and their changing patterns” and “People and their interaction with each other.” The next two segments are “organizational structure and change” and “organizational culture and values.” The last segment is “Enterprises and their work processes.” I suggest that you include all ten questions in this list.
My third topic is “Trends in Social Innovation.” This is broken down into five topics:” Trends in Social Marketing and Promotion,” ” Trends in Social Customer Services,” ” Trends in Social Workforce Development,” ” Trends in Social Technology Development,” Trends in Social Business Strategy.” You need to include all of these topics. You also need to have a well-developed analysis or definition of each of these topics. Do not skimp on either the analysis or the definition because these will be the basis of the questions you need to ask and the types of answers you will seek.
My fourth topic is “Trends in Social Research.” Again, this needs some pretty robust analysis and explanation. You should also use a good book or Web page to support your claims with citations and references. This question will probably not be asked often, but it is good to know exactly what types of questions your research team has been asked over the years.
The final topic is “Trends in Social Productivity.” This is a broad topic, but I am limiting it to categories where there is a clear trend over time. For instance, increasing sales is one category, increasing ease of shopping is another and increasing the number of stores is another. Each of these categories has clearly changed over the last two or three decades. These questions will be quite different if you are asking them of a twenty-year-old.