External forces and the predominant trends were always some of the main driving forces behind the world of business. No matter whether we are talking about the global political outlook, social tendencies, or latest-gen tech, all these factors leave their imprint on how we do business. The ones who manage to leverage these forces to their advantage are usually the ones leading the pack.
Keeping that in mind, we have to admit that the last couple of yours gave us a lot of things to consider and analyze. Probably too many
Let us then go together through some of the most relevant forces that will shape the outlook of the business world and see how these facts can be utilized to the benefit of your organization.
Users will continue seeing the world as all-online
The outbreak of COVID-19 forever changed the way we interact with each other and the world around us. The main change is that the people started going online for all kinds of activities from business expos to church sermons. In terms of online commerce, the numbers are on a consistent growth ever since Q1 2020. These trends won't change when we finally put an end to the pandemic. The global population has already been gravitating online in previous years. Pandemic experience only gave us the taste of the future and we took the bait.
The labor market will undergo a great generation shift
As time goes by and an increasing number of boomers continue to retire, Millennials are finally taking the place of the dominant labor force. This fact entails certain changes since the present-day business world is still under the strong influence of the previous ruling generation. So, we can expect that businesses will lean toward more flexible and diverse work environments with a strong accent on hybrid work experience. The companies will also need to take a more proactive hiring approach hunting for prospective talents rather than waiting for them to come knocking at the doors.
The ongoing quest for sustainability
The fact we are living on a planet with a very fragile ecosystem and very finite resources becomes painfully obvious with each new day. So, it shouldn't be a surprise we are continuing to see sustainability initiatives even in the areas where they are not so obvious. Take for instance the petroleum industry that has been utilizing more focus on maintenance and the greater utilization of H2S treatment equipment all in an effort to optimize and preserve the existing equipment. More examples like this will be called for and dictated by the frugal economy we will experience in the following years.
The automation of business activities reaches a higher level
Although automation has been very present in the world of business before the COVID-19 pandemic, "the new normal" forced us to find a new way to leverage the benefits of AI and robotic manufacturing processes. All these developments brought us to the current state of hyper-automation where AI, machine learning, and automated manufacturing tools join forces to create an unprecedented level of efficiency. The bar is set very high and new competitors will need to work very hard to reach it.
The rise of the on-demand app economy
This is yet another development that has been brewing for a few years now but it is expected to take a full swing in 2022. In one of the previous passages, we have mentioned that the pandemic made people open to changes and experiences. To satisfy these new needs they are mostly shifting to an app-based economy and readily available products. For example, as much as 90% of Americans have been picking up new hobbies while 36% of consumers are shifting established brand loyalties. These actions create sudden demand spikes and lend the economy a relentless tempo.
The expansion of the middle class
In spite of the several difficulties we have observed over the last decade, the middle class is still going strong and will continue to grow in the following years. According to data provided by the World Economic Forum, in the period since the 90s the number of people living on less than $1.25 a day has been cut by half. Accordingly, the middle class has doubled since 2010 and is expected to triple by 2030. These are some very encouraging indicators promising that the post-pandemic economic fallout won’t have too devastating effects on the economy.
Influencers becoming even more influential
These days, public opinions and sensibilities are largely dictated by social media discussion that is often steered by influential internet personalities. Because of that, we can expect to see social media marketing moving away from paid ads and other more direct forms into a subtler, influencer-focused area. The global influencer marketing market size has doubled since 2019 and it's now valued at $13.8 billion. We don't see the reason why these numbers would do anything but rise during the next year.
We hope this short article gave you a general overview of some of the most important forces shaping up the business world of 2022. As we can see, the world is taking large steps in the direction of automation, AI, and online commerce. These tendencies will be accompanied by the pandemic-dictated purchasing habits and sensibilities of the younger Millennial generation that is slowly taking over the reign. Use these facts to your advantage. Future outcomes will only become harder to assess as time goes by.