Julius Caesar / Shakespeare

julius-caesarShakespeare’s Julius Caesar gives important clues about forecasting the future. Most of the classical works have a figure of soothsayer, and there are different signs that imply that the prophecy might be true. In Shakespeare’s play, in the first act a soothsayer warns Caesar about “the Ides of March”, and later Julius Caesar’s wife Calpurnia tells her worries about him because of her nightmare about his assassin. Artemidorus, one of Caesar’s supporters, also tries to warn him. Finally by not taking these warnings into consideration, Caesar confronts with his tragic end. Caesar is not alone in his insufficiency in predicting the future. In the same play Brutus, Cassius, and other conspirators can not predict the consequences of their actions. There are certain archetypes throughout the history that can help to forecast the future. Any leader who becomes so powerful in his/her context, the arrogance curtains the problems, and enemies are pretending friends, miniaturize the signals of threat. So by considering the signals, Caesar should have thought he was in jeopardy. And any conspirator should have to realize that the friends of the victim always try to take revenge. In Macbeth, Shakespeare says that one can read the future by looking the seeds of time. [1]

In the business world, unbeatable companies like Microsoft, Nokia, Kodak, and Polaroid had the same problem in forecasting the future and taking the rights steps. The management teams of Polaroid and Kodak ignored the introduction of LCD screens and finally both of the brands were sold. Microsoft and Nokia saw what Apple did by introducing app store, even though they were too slow to adapt the concept of independent developers market for apps for mobile devices. They insisted on employing their engineers, and finally they lost the mobile market to Apple and Samsung. Any leader or company that shuts the eyes for the signals of the change can not run away from the tragic end Caesar. So leaders should use their radars to find out the clues to the future and act accordingly.

[1] William Shakespeare, Macbeth, Coradella Bookshelf Edition, 2004, Pg.8.

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