prompts to prep for the management meeting

New 10-Minute Hack With AI Prompts for Strategy Meeting Prep

prompts step by step Jun 30, 2023
Imagine your last management meeting about strategy, product development, or investments. Are you happy with the discussions, or do you have a nagging feeling that the team may have missed important decision factors?
If your meetings are like mine, colleagues participate actively in the discussions but did not have the time to really think through the causes and effects. So it's quite likely that we may have missed something. Not a nice feeling.
What if there is a 10-minute fix?

Drumroll.... Use My Bard (or Edge) Prompts for a Quick Analysis

Bard (by Google) and Edge (by Microsoft) can search the Internet for weak signals (early signs of disruption) and explain how they might impact your industry. They will relate the signals others have shared and discussed and gift you that wisdom instantly.
It will not give you the total list. Nor will it predict the future accurately.
But it will activate your expertise that may have slid to the back of your mind under the pressure of daily urgencies. And it will clarify intricate cause-effect relationships that you might not be aware of.
Think of it as the warm-up before your run (or whatever sports you do). As the vocal exercises before singing. As a quick recipe, read before cooking.
I've tried it successfully for a client of mine in automotive, and I will share the prompts with you.
I was done in under 10 minutes, and so can you.



Prompt 1: Getting an Overview

I explained to the A.I. what I was looking for and what output I wanted. I used the explanation of weak signals (early signs of change) to increase the chance of interesting information. The alternatives for weak signals would be trends, developments, black swans, and similar words. I tried these but got the obvious stuff from the McKinsey-s of the world. OK, but too mainstream, familiar, and certain to be useful. I mean, why ask for stuff everybody thinks of? That wouldn't help my competitive edge, right?
Here's the prompt. Replace [automotive industry] with your industry.
Weak signals are ambiguous, unfamiliar developments that may impact the [automotive industry] in the near future. Weak signals emerge in domains including politics, economy, society, technology, legal, and ecology. List weak signals per domain. Explain what makes the signal weak and why it is ambiguous. Only include signals with medium or high uncertainty. Indicate each signal's level of uncertainty and impact if it were to develop. Tabulate your answer.
Within seconds, Bard came up with the following table.
The table was a good first step but not quite useful yet. I worried about the signals (highlighted in blue): were these the main emerging disruptors? And I wondered about the explanations (highlighted in yellow): why would one thing lead to another?
But hey, at least now I had an overview I could build upon.

Prompt 2: Diving Into a Domain

I first wanted to know about the main signals, so I asked Bard per domain to add signals. I asked for five because that would give me an indication of variety without getting information overload.
Variety is important because you know you have the main signal when there is none. When variety is extreme, you must expand the list and categorize it into uncertainty and impact categories (high-high would be the go-to). When variety is medium, five signals are enough to get a feel for change.
Here is the prompt. Repeat for each domain (politics, economy, society, technology, legal, ecology).
Please add four more weak signals to the [politics] domain. Use the same tabulated format.
This is the table it came up with:
From my in-depth scenario planning with organizations, I know that the signals (in the blue box) are realistic and urgent. But if you don't have that experience, you want to check the A.I.'s output with other information. A quick way to check is to Google the following and compare the search results with the table Bard (or Edge) generated.
Here's what I Googled. You replace 'automotive industry' with your industry.
Toggle to Images, and you can do a quick visual comparison with the findings of others.
Such a quick visual check will further enrich your active insight into the changes in your industry. However, merely Googling the PESTLE analysis (without the A.I. prompting) will not stick. You need to search and engage your mind to have the benefits actively.
Anyway, the visual check confirmed that the five signals would suffice. However, Bard's explanations felt a little far-fetched. So, I decided to prompt it for explanations to help me understand.

Prompt 3. Understand the Why

I picked the explanations that I couldn't place for the prompt. Easy. I started with "Why" and then copied the explanation. Furthermore, I asked it for examples. Like so:
Why [does increased political stability make it difficult for car makers to plan for the future?]. Illustrate your point with recent examples.
And this is what it gave me:
In my eyes, this is the meat of the exercise. It clarified the signals and gave me insight into what we should look out for.
The best thing, and also why I prefer Bard over Edge, is that it gave me multiple drafts. Edge doesn't do that (yet). Quickly reviewing the drafts gave me insight into why and how each signal could play out.

Take Aways

A quick analysis by Bard or Edge activates and enriches your prior knowledge. Your knowledge will be at your fingertips during the management meeting and will help to have a more in-depth discussion. You can extend the debate beyond the usual pros and cons into future opportunities and threats. Including those in the discussion will avoid the cost of changing decisions later and add the bonus of a fresh competitive advantage.

Bonus Tip

The cool thing is that you can use the concept of Bard (or Edge) to refresh your insights for other management decisions, too. I've shown you how to use it to analyze emerging changes in your industry quickly. But you can also use prompts like these:
  • Please create a table of pros and cons of [decision]
  • Imagine you are participating in a discussion as three distinct personas: the Evaluator, the Thinker, and the Criticiser. The Evaluator assesses the possibilities and potential use cases of the idea presented. The Thinker mulls over the idea, providing additional advice to expand and enhance it. The Criticiser scrutinizes the idea, questioning its feasibility and utility. Once I present the idea, each persona will share their thoughts. After the first round of discussion, You'll check if I'd like to continue with more rounds, making sure to ask after each round. Each round will build upon the thoughts and perspectives shared in the previous rounds. If you understood, say: let's start the discussion.
  • You are a virtual decision-making guide. I have weighed the pros and cons of [decision] and am considering _______. Help me align this decision with our business strategy and goals, which are _______. Provide a thoughtful analysis that considers our future aspirations and current preferences.
  • Act as a working professional. You will provide the preparation I need to do and the questions I need to ask for a meeting. I will provide you with either the agenda or the purpose of the meeting. The output format should look like "Meeting: Time: People: Preparation: Questions: " The result should be concise and understandable for a general audience. Now ask me for more information about the meeting.

Make the Benefits Your Own

With those benefits in mind, here's what I want you to do:
  1. Sign up for a free account of Bard or Edge straight away.
  2. Copy prompt 1-3 to see what it comes up with.
  3. Schedule 10 minutes before your next management team meeting to ensure you freshen up your knowledge, right before the discussion.
  4. Let me know how it went in the comments!


PS. Here’s another great idea to get strategy going

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