According to those who know, the top trending subjects for 2016 are customer service, mobile tech, simplicity, personalisation and the fact that millenials are out and aging is in. Well that puts me bang on trend. Now, I’m worth listening to.
I’m feeling a bit smug, since I blogged on almost all those subject last year. I have three random thoughts about 2016 and beyond (see links at bottom of this post)
The constant restructure
The US food industry was spooked by 3G Capital and Berkshire Hathaway’s merging of Heinz and Kraft. As costs were slashed, many competitors looked to it as a template to do business.
This deal did not fill me with optimism. Many of their brands are decades old and out of favour with consumer trends. However, there are many millions of US consumers, on food stamps, who rely on businesses like this to create convenience food that’s made of good ingredients and offers them a decent diet.
KraftHeinz brands will need considerable innovation at a time when its owners are taking huge chunks of cost out of the business. How can you grow a business by continuously cutting it?
Constant business restructures are good if you’re Bain or McKinsey, but terrible for morale if you’re having to reapply for your old job and taking a pay cut. Goodwill and mutual trust head for the door.
Every single one of our clients was restructured in 2015. I’m expecting this trend to continue.
Living with turmoil
We like to think that a period of stability follows a crisis. After 2009 we all thought we were headed for a bit of break from the gloom. It’s never happened. China wobbles, Russia’s sagging, the Euro is a basket case. We’ve never truly recovered.
With faith in politicians and bankers at its lowest ebb, we are all going to have to understand that the world that we saw as one of continuous progress, where things get a bit better everyday, is a pipedream.
For those of us who run business and serve other businesses, the best thing we can do is understand how we can deliver the kind of services that businesses undergoing constant change will need.
The growth of experts
This was the first year that Amazon really took over my Christmas shopping. They delivered at all hours, mostly over the garden hedge. However, I don’t see the end of our leaving the house to go shopping. Of course, we will continue to go out shopping, but only for the things we want to feel, touch and learn about. Shopping will be all experience and entertainment and drudgery free.
If you don’t believe me, go to Haymarket in Boston or Exmouth Market, in London and watch how we stand in line for ages for exotic street food or how we love to banter with market traders. We love talking to and buying from people who know their stuff and, if we like them, we will buy from them again and again.
It doesn’t matter if it’s a holiday, cheese or furniture, shops so often leave us having to make up our minds what to buy with so little real knowledge. There is a massive opportunity for experts in their field to be on the shop floor talking to customers.
So many young people don’t have jobs, surely developing the next generation of experts can’t be that difficult. I’d rather buy from a person than an algorithm any day.
Author: Richard Williams #JustSaying
I’m Looking for Simplicity – https://wmhagency.com/im-looking-for-simplicity/
Be Brief – https://wmhagency.com/be-brief/
Does Personalisation Have a Future? http://viewer.zmags.com/publication/133ef869?page=6#/133ef869/6
Smug! 2016 trends: Customer service, mobile, simplicity, focus on age and personalisation. Blogged & wrote on 4 of these last year.
— Richard Williams (@RichardWMH) January 5, 2016
— Williams Murray Hamm (@WMHagency) October 16, 2015