I gathered a lot of useful information from my travels this summer and particularly liked a story around global trends. I have mashed some of this with my own thoughts on how technology is at the heart of change:
- Rising demand for resources as the world’s population grows – the large emerging markets will drive this need, and as well as staple food and clothing, they will insist on smartphones, online shopping and the fastest connectivity.
- A growing urban middle-class in emerging economies – this huge group of people knows what it wants and it buys the latest trends; as the generations grow up, technology will very much be a part of their day-to-day existence.
- The population in those economies will experience lifestyle changes – lifestyle means quality of life and this implies disposable income to buy and consume – technology sits at the centre of this movement, be it phones and gadgetry or purchasing via smartphones.
- More online shopping everywhere – my key message here is where in the past people went through a process before purchasing something, now we are online all the time, so in effect we are always shopping, especially via mobiles.
- The percentage of the world’s population that is over 60 will be a third bigger by 2050 than it is today – let’s not wait for 2050; right now, people over 60 know what they want, they purchase leisure-related goods and services like never before, and they have the cash – this demographic needs to be targeted starting now.
I like to stay grounded, so as I lead a global project for the company looking to the future, I have started by looking back, as I think the future will be best served by a mix of old-fashioned values and people interacting, combined with the evolution and speed that technology brings.