As the summer sun rages in the sky above the offices of Soundview Executive Book Summaries (and most of the United States), lawmakers in the nation’s capital are debating whether or not to bring the industry devoted to harnessing solar power to its knees. The U.S. House of Representatives has its sights set on reducing or cutting federal grant and guaranteed loan programs for the development of solar power. While it’s not the purpose of this blog to offer political comment on any decision by the federal government, the notion of cutting funding for the solar power industry has a more critical effect on business that is worth mentioning.
The potential interruption of funding opportunities could have a wide-reaching impact. In an article in USA Today, Roger Efird, managing director of Suntech America (a part of Suntech Power, the world’s largest producer of solar panels), said, “Is the solar industry going to die if we lose these programs? No, but we’re going to stall.”
His quote led me to reflect on a recent summary published by Soundview Executive Book Summaries. In Flash Foresight, author Daniel Burrus reveals that plotting your business’s course for the future is dependent on your ability to analyze hard and soft trends. I had the opportunity to interview Burrus about his book, and when we discussed hard and soft trends, he said the following:
When the government passes a law, it actually creates a series of hard trends and you can profit from those. You have to pay attention to what’s happening.
Applying that to the news today about the potential cut for the solar power industry, one imagines that there are companies currently working on other alternative sources of energy that could potentially benefit in the future. If you read the summary of Flash Foresight, you’ll gain a better understanding of Burrus’ methods to see the trends and capitalize.