Three-horizon, or 3Hs for short, is a futurespective activity to help a team articulate how to manage for current performance, while maximising future growth opportunities.
Running the activity:
1. Explain the horizons and the intent of the activity:
McKinsey’s three-horizon structure provides a nomenclature for: the present moment (horizon 1), a near future (horizon 2) and a more distant future (horizon 3). Innovative companies distribute their investment portfolio according to these three horizons.
2. Describe the horizons of the activity.
• H1: what are the things we are/should currently investing on?
• H2: what are the things we are/should be investing on in a near future?
• H3: what are the things we are/should be investing on in a distant future?
3. Decide with the participants what is near future and what is distant future (consider rewriting the Hs label – e.g., H1 Today, H2 next year, H3 in 3 years)
4. Ask the participants to write their notes for each of the horizons area
5. Affinity grouping and conversations
This activity is especially useful for teams going through strategic conversations. Many teams have a hard time balancing urgent from important actions, especially when they relate to future options.
Remote-team advice: This activity works well for remote teams. Use a remote board of your choice.