Vanishing Point

Deb Westphal

As CEO of Toffler Associates, Deborah brings skills and insights honed over 30 years working with some of the top minds and leaders of governments and Fortune 100 companies. Deborah has an MBA from Webster University and a BS in Electrical Engineering from the University of New Mexico, and has completed extensive continuing education with Harvard Business School and Wharton Business School. She is also a member of the National Academies of Science, Engineering and Medicine.

Recent Posts

Infographic: Health Disruptions and How Your Organization Can Benefit

Posted by Deb Westphal

Jul 6, 2017 8:15:00 AM

 

Organizations must not only understand and decide how to best address their workforce health needs and expectations, but also determine the best business systems to support that future direction. Vision is not enough, critical actions must take place to align cost structure and revenue forecasts to support growth into a potentially new adjacency.

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Reflecting on Future Shock Forum 2016

Posted by Deb Westphal

Dec 15, 2016 1:22:45 PM

I’ve just returned from Future Shock Forum 2016. I’m exhausted but completely energized and so grateful.

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Algorithms Don’t Understand Love – Advertising Week 2016 Presentation Highlights

Posted by Deb Westphal

Oct 19, 2016 9:15:00 AM

 

The future is exciting. For any organization to grasp its potential and their role in making a positive impact on humanity at large, they must connect as many dots as possible in and across fast-paced, hyperconnected marketplaces. Across every industry, those correlations offer the best chance to create, pursue, and assess our future with openness and optimism. They help organizations and industries to see things they might otherwise miss, helping them to position their business to thrive in an uncertain future.

 

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Liz Ross is the CEO of Periscope, an independent, full-spectrum impact agency. She invited me to join her on the Bing stage during 2016 New York Advertising Week to take a look at look at how (and why) professionals in the marketing field must learn, unlearn, relearn if the industry is to keep up with rapidly changing global realities.

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Is Water the World’s Greatest Security Risk?

Posted by Deb Westphal

Aug 31, 2016 9:00:00 AM

Hyperconnectivity, the broadening and strengthening network that is rapidly encompassing every human on the planet, has been a driving force of globalization. This spread has played a necessary role in linking machines, objects and people, enabling greater levels of collaboration, and opening the boundaries between markets and economies. Yet it also has brought about unintended consequences.

 

Across the world, enterprise and government leaders are challenged to create and sustain progress in an environment that is increasingly complicated to understand, plan for, and adapt to. The very thing that broke down boundaries and pulled societies, economies, businesses, governments, and people into a shared global playing field has continued to evolve. This new state has produced new ‘hyper-polar’ opportunities, struggles for ownership, and demand for shared resources and responsibilities.

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The Lifelong Learner: How Alvin Toffler Shaped the Future

Posted by Deb Westphal

Jul 6, 2016 12:04:05 PM

Alvin Toffler, the namesake and founder of Toffler Associates passed away on June 27, 2016. The news spread quickly across the globe through social media, press coverage, and personal reflections. Many of the conversations centered on the impact of his bestselling books. While it’s true his impact on the general population was in large part promulgated by books like Future Shock, The Third Wave, and Powershift, it was the people behind the books – not the books themselves – that transformed how individuals, businesses, and governments think about the present and future.

 

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An Insider Look at Thriving in the Third Wave of The Third Wave

Posted by Deb Westphal

Apr 13, 2016 9:18:00 AM


On April 5, 2016, Steve Case introduced his book, The Third Wave. The title is a nod to our own Alvin Toffler (pictured right), who introduced the moniker in his revolutionary 1984 book of the same name. Mr. Toffler’s book offered new ways to understand and adapt to the revolution shaping the future of society as we moved from the Industrial Age (The Second Wave) into the Knowledge Age.

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The 4 Drivers at the Heart of Revolutionary Wealth

Posted by Deb Westphal

Feb 17, 2016 9:00:00 AM

Communities, governments, business leaders and educators across the globe have turned attention and resources toward the growing concerns about crumbling infrastructure. The risk implications around a weakened foundation are tremendous, subtracting value from roads, bridges and clean water, creating economic fragility, and provoking strife around who owns responsibility for maintenance and use of key resources. 

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Exploring a New Image of the Future Proof® SME at Beyond SG50

Posted by Deb Westphal

Jan 27, 2016 9:53:31 AM

On August 9, 1965, Singapore became an independent and sovereign democratic nation. Since it’s founding, Singapore has grown into a standard-bearer of modern development. The city-state is a multi-cultural global hub of commerce, technology, finance and transportation.


As part of a year-long celebration of its 50 year anniversary, the Beyond SG50 Forum explored pathways of innovation in technology and the global supply chain that have positioned the country as a leader since. The Ministry of Finance and the Ministry of Manpower both were in attendance, putting particular focus on the importance of human capital. From that platform, the conference explored what corporations need to do to sustain a peaceful and prosperous Singapore, and an increasingly collaborative global marketplace.

 

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Your 2016 Organizational Agility Checklist

Posted by Deb Westphal

Jan 20, 2016 9:58:51 AM



The turn of the year has us all doing a performance analysis. As a leader, how and where did we thrive in the last year? What needs to improve? What competitive strengths did we sustain or build, and (so importantly) what needs to happen to reach the next set of growth objectives?

 

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A Future Focus: What 2015 Means for 2025

Posted by Deb Westphal

Dec 30, 2015 11:05:17 AM

It’s simply human nature to presume that the change in our midst is more significant and rapid than ever. It’s why, at the transition point between a year gone and a year to come, we reflect on the amount of change and the speed with which disruption and new innovation occurred.

 

Within our current knowledge-driven economy, it’s more appropriate than ever to observe that the world indeed is evolving rapidly and significantly. Change is driven by ideas, and those ideas are actually taking us across the globe and even into space. Driven by new forms of intelligence, as well as a host of new opportunities and challenges, the world has moved forward in dramatic ways.

 

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