Looking ahead at 2016

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“The only thing we know about the future is that it is going to be different.”

Peter Drucker said that over forty years ago. That hasn’t stopped prognosticators of all kinds from trying their hand at describing just how the future will be different. Every year at this time articles foretelling the future fill print media and the blogopshere. Here are some of the most well-crafted ones I could find about the future of business.

From Eric J. McNulty: Turbocharging Your Organization for 2016

“So how can you as a leader bring this preparation to your enterprise? It certainly isn’t through top-down directives or yet another attempt to craft the perfect organizational structure. Business today is too fast-moving and complex for those options to work. Instead, leaders must master the duality of focus and agility. That is, there must be unity up, down, and across the enterprise on shared objectives, along with great flexibility to seize opportunities and overcome obstacles.”

From Stephane Kasriel: The Four Trends That Will Change The Way We Work By 2021

“In some ways, 2015 was the year of the gig economy, with the scale and diversity of the freelance workforce not just expanding, but attracting more mainstream notice as well. By our own recent estimates here at Upwork, some 54 million Americans are now freelancers. Still, that’s just the most noticeable trend among several that will reshape the nature of work in the next five years. In fact, shifts in technology, connectivity, and the expectations of both employers and employees are on track to bring about bigger changes than the freelance economy can on its own. Here are four.”

From Sandy Smith: Top 10 Workplace Trends For 2016

“Industrial-organizational (I-O) psychologists study workplace issues of critical relevance to business, including talent management, coaching, assessment, selection, training, organizational development, performance and work–life balance. These are the workplace needs members of the Society for Industrial and Organizational Psychology (SIOP) are predicting businesses will need to address in 2016.”

From Susan Galer: Gartner’s Top 10 Strategic Technology Trends For 2016

“Emerging technologies are poised to break out and disrupt business models in 2016. According to research firm Gartner, unprecedented connectivity between a plethora of devices tapping intelligence from smart machines will drive this dramatic transformation. The results include dazzling user experiences and business advances. David W. Cearley, vice president and Gartner Fellow, said the shift to digital business is the fundamental theme behind next year’s top technology trends. During a recent Gartner webinar, he identified three overarching topics within the top 10 trends supporting this move: the physical and virtual worlds merge, intelligence everywhere, and all applications become cloud-centric.”

From Greg Satell: 3 Big Things to Look Out for in 2016

“A new year is a great time to both reflect and look forward. In past years, I’ve written about how the cloud is reshaping industry, how interfaces are evolving and the emergence of new ecosystems. We always seem to be in the midst of some great new trend that is reshaping how we live and work.”

From Dale Buss: 15 CEOs Make 2016 Biz Projections

“Chief Executive asked 15 CEOs across industries and business size ranges for their insights on the biggest challenges and opportunities in the year to come. Here’s what they had to say.”

From Randall S. Peterson: Ten tips for leaders in 2016

“Ten Tips for Leaders in 2016 from London Business School’s Leadership Institute.”

From Tomas Chamorro-Premuzic: Nine Work Trends That Will Not Happen In 2016

“Good morning, afternoon, or whatever it is where you are reading this. But if it’s the end of 2015, it is still not too late to add to the predictions of 2016. I know you have probably already seen too many of these inundating your social media feed, and that they are all mostly untestable, too obvious, or mere wishful thinking (perhaps the grown-up equivalent of a letter to Santa). So my list is slightly different: it focused on the things that will not happen in 2016.”

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