8 Big Trends for 2008

January 2008 Issue

You owe it to yourself to take some time at the start of the year to find out what the trends are in your bsuiness environment and to explore what they could mean for you and your organization's future.

But how do you know what's coming? Fortunately, there are people who spend their time analyzing trends. One such person is Jim Carroll, a leading international futurist, trends and innovation expert, with clients such as the Walt Disney Corporation, Motorola, the BBC, Manulife and the Swiss Innovation Forum.

Click here to view Jim Carroll’s report What Comes Next? A Trends Perspective for 2008 and Beyond. Here’s a summary of the eight big trends he identifies, along with my perspective about their profound implications for risk management professionals:

1. Revenge of the Math Geeks"Analytics is hot." Math geeks who can figure out complex algorithms, mine existing data, and crunch the numbers can be a risk manager’s best friend. How will you insert a risk perspective into your company’s analytics?

Small is the New R&DInnovation no longer comes from ‘big’ science. Today’s scientific discoveries "percolate from the bottom up" because topic experts can go online to "share their latest research and insights with their global peers on a continuous basis". How can your organization use this new global R&D process to increase its competitiveness?

Attitude and AmusementWhat’s your plan to replace the baby boomers leaving your workforce? To attract and engage the gaming generation, you’ll need to keep them "active, engaged, interested, and amused". How will you make the gaming generation’s ability to thrive on change work to your advantage?

Time DisappearsThe pace is speeding up in today’s business world. "Issues, challenges, threats and opportunities can happen at light speed." How will you engender flexibility and agility into your business practices?

Resisting Change Retires As GenX-ers replace baby boomers in leadership roles, there will be a dramatic difference in how companies react to technology-driven business model disruption. Where boomers are "reluctant to embrace new business models, the next generation steamrollers them!" How will this new attitude towards change affect your ability to apply the risk discipline to your business strategies?

Careers EndMany professions are experiencing a trend towards contract work. "We are witnessing the end of the modern organization, and an ever more rapid migration to the era of the itinerant workforce." How will you demonstrate the relevance of risk management expertise in a skills-for-hire economy?

Knowledge and Skills Banks "In the hyper-innovative global economy, the only thing that counts is knowledge." And the half-life of knowledge is collapsing with rapid advances in science, technology, and business. How will your organization access the right skills, at the right time, for the right purpose?

8. Interactivity Redefines"Essentially, every device and thing around us is about to become plugged in  leading us to an era of interactivity and connectivity that is mind-boggling in scope." How will your company manage this transition and tap the potential of pervasive connectivity?

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The Neuroscience of Enterprise Risk Management (written by Diana Del Bel Belluz of Risk Wise) expores findings from the field of neuroscience and shares practical tips on how to apply them to enhance individuals' risk management thinking and implement brain-friendly ERM practices in organizations.

The article was published by The Conference Board of Canada in the Autumn 2017 issue of the journal Risk Watch.