Small Business Trends in 2018

There are many helpful articles about what are likely trends for 2018 and beyond. By all means, read those! Here Schmidt and Long points out the trends that they have seen that are likely to continue to grow in prominence.

Further Reduction of the 9-5 desk job

Telecommuting. Untraditional work spaces such as the Green Garage in Detroit. Increased globalization. More gig workers and freelancers. These, and other trends, are likely to continue to reduce the tradition of the 9-5 desk job. Employees seek better work/life balance. Employers want happy employees, and also efficiency and cost savings my eliminating office space.

Social media

Social media has exploded in popularity. It is now nearly impossible to start a business without a social media presence. Facebook and twitter continue to be the stalwarts, but depending on your business, Instagram or snapchat may better suit your needs. A photographer, for example, might devote more time to Instagram than Facebook because of the visual nature of Instagram. We won’t make predictions, but younger adults are leaving Facebook for other platforms. What the next big social media thing will be, we will just have to wait.

Technology

Some jobs have already been replaced by technology. Cashier robots. Machines assembling cars. This trend will only continue as technology replaces humans. Technology will also aid employees and employers. The internet changed the entire business world. Technology will continue to change how business is conducted.

Learning by Doing

The traditional in person training sessions with PowerPoint and manuals aren’t go away. But they are reducing in frequency. Harvard states PowerPoint is damaging and it’s use should be stopped. And we can all recall a brutal PowerPoint presentation we sat through. Or made… The training sessions ran via manual are also losing favor. The growing trend is to learn by doing. Work in teams. Learn by talking and listening. This is a growing trend for learning in many industries.

Employee and Socially Responsible Behaviors

2017 brought an avalanche of sexual assault complaints. 2017 also saw record weather events- hurricanes, fires, and more. Income inequality continues to grow in some nations. Businesses will strive to make their workplaces safer and friendlier. They will also engage in socially responsible behaviors. Certainly, some business will do this simply because it helps their brand and thus their bottom line. Other businesses, though, see it as their duty, or they have a particular target (think of the Gates Foundation’s fight against malaria). Businesses will continue to be friendlier to their employees and the world as a whole.

To discuss your business needs, please contact Benjamin Long of Schmidt and Long.