Eleven Deloitte consultants sit in a conference room in Dallas, doing exactly what hundreds of us do everyday; exchanging ideas, discussing ideas, and generally working as a team to solve the problems their clients want them to help with. The only difference is, eight of the team members aren't even in the same room.
The future of business communication, at least in Deloitte's opinion, is something called the "telesuite" - a high-definition, real-time communications device that shows the image of your coworkers, almost like being there.
Currently, the "telesuite" is an innovation -- the stuff of advertisements and Popular Mechanics -- but by 2020, many see tele-communing increasing to an extreme degree.
"We may see people with telesuites in their homes," says Blaine Nelson of Deloitte. Others believe it will change the patterns of where we live. But more than technical innovation, it will be the confidence and optimism of North Texas that will set us apart.
"I think that is a characteristic of Texas and Texans is we have that optimistic streak in all of us," says John Muse, co-founded of HM Capital Partners. "Entrepreneurship is celebrated and encouraged."
With a central location, no income taxes, and lots of investment capital, Muse says North Texas holds all the ingredients for success.
"Dallas has a strong history of being very fertile group for entrepreneurship," Nelson agrees. "It's a can-do attitude and a risk taking environment."
Both men agree, by 2020, the business landscape will be a mix of big businesses as well as an entrepreneurs playhouse.
"Texas is a business person's heaven," says Nelson.
Investment capital is another benefit to DFW's future success.
"Last year, Dallas ranked third behind hedge fund, risk capital in country behind San Francisco and Boston," says Muse. "In many ways, Dallas-Fort Worth, is just now coming into its own."
Nothing is clearer in that respect than the increased development of DFW's cultural advancements, like the Dallas Center for the Performing Arts.
"You can debate all day whether art drives commerce or commerce drives art -- the reality is they don't exist without each other," says Nelson. "In the history of the world, there has never been a great city that did not have great art."
Nelson looks to a failed bid to bring Boeing's corporate headquarters to Dallas as an example. "Chicago got the nod because they had much more activities -- cultural activities -- cultural content." In ten years, though, that situation should change.
Using technology, culture, and the bright young minds of entrepreneurs, DFW in a decade will be the place where business gets done.