08 February 2006

McKinsey & Co: we like it when the stars align.

McKinsey & Co (www.mckinseyquarterly.com) recently published their ‘Ten trends to watch in 2006’ and DIFFUSION was interested to see how many of their 10-year predictions matched ours, see blog Marketing futures: 10 brand and marketing trends for CEOs to watch in 2006. While our specific focus was on Australia, it is obvious as all Western businesses function in an increasingly global environment, companies here will experience similar challenges and opportunities.

Specifically six of our trends were significantly echoed in the McKinsey report: the separation between personal and work lives changing due to technology (trend 1); the emergence of Chinese brands (trend 3); the increased scale and reach of Government (trend 5); consumers becoming business participants with increased power and the growing importance of business ethics (trends 7 and trend 8); the importance of ritual and community for creativity (trend 9).

According to the McKinsey report they correspondingly identified that: “technological connectivity will transform the way people live and interact”; within the next 20 years economic activity will be equally aligned between Asia and Europe (with China and India being important players); “public-sector activities will balloon”; “the role and behaviour of big business will come under increasingly sharp scrutiny” (specifically the level of suspicion and acceptance from society towards big business will increase); the growing importance of communities, as these will increasingly “become responsible for innovations”.

The McKinsey article sums up by urging companies to look at the implications of these trends, especially in relation to their customer’s needs and competitive developments. DIFFUSION can't agree strongly enough with our colleagues at McKinsey & Co and have gone as far as making some practical suggestions for CEOs to consider. We might be visionaries but we're pragmatists too.

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