From megatrends to micro-trends, trends are one of the hottest topics in business and society today. And there’s good reason. By monitoring and analyzing them, people and organizations hope to gain the intelligence to navigate change in a disruptive world.
After taking a look at the most topical types of trends, we share a conversation captured in the Wolters Kluwer’s first Executive Insights podcast. In this podcast, Nancy McKinstry, Wolters Kluwer CEO, speaks with Michael Cleary, Vice President of Product Solutions in the company’s Global Platform Organization (GPO) - which co-creates state-of-the-art digital solutions with company businesses around the world - on the three structural trends directly impacting our own customers, and how the company is positioned to respond. Ultimately, these trends are helping drive the ongoing transformation of Wolters Kluwer towards an ‘expert solutions’ company.
From analysts such as Forrester and Gartner, the Big Three and Big Four, through design consultancies such as Frog, to Ray Kurzweil and other noted futurists - everyone is talking about trends nowadays, including:
- Megatrends. These are the great forces in societal development very likely to affect all aspects of society over the next 10-15 years. They include our knowledge on globalization, the ageing world population, global mobility, accelerating flows of data, and the pace of technological change.
- Business trends. These are the explorations into future movements in specific sectors and industries: information technology, industrial manufacturing, fintech, healthcare, accounting, and corporate governance. They tend to focus on a period of 1-5 years.
- Professional trends. These trends are focused on specific disciplines: leadership development, digital marketing and content marketing. Typically published annually, they are often used as marketing tools
- Consumer trends. These explore the needs and preferences of consumers. Also often published annually, these are popular with professionals looking to design better products, services, and brand and marketing strategies.
So, why are trends so topical?