Surfing Your New Normal

The “new normal” is most often used these days to describe a new economic world shaped by the Great Recession. That’s an underestimation of profound changes, including innovation, that were in the making before the Great Recession was being felt by most businesses and their leaders. If you want to surf the “new normal,” rather than be swept under tow, consider the following factors that are not primarily a result of challenging economic times:

  • Most people, across all economic strata, increasingly consider true wealth to be their time. Focus your internal and external marketing efforts with this in mind.
  • 95% of productive work today does not require an advanced degree, including technology oriented products and many health care services. Attitude and the willingness to flexibly apply one’s skill are a necessity.
  • IQ can be enhanced later in life and extremely challenging work can be done very early in our lifespan, as well as at a late age (80s+) for a majority of citizens. Newer medications and cognitive training are increasingly being used to enhance intellectual abilities into our later years, not simply to eradicate negative symptoms.
  • A growing number of professionals do not need an office away from their homes and the connecting technology is rapidly becoming less costly and more accessible.
  • Integrated health care is now occurring because the momentum to provide integrated health care makes increasing sense from treatment effectiveness, cost and ethical perspective.
  • Traditional employment may remain relatively high for some time to come as an underclass of Americans grows. But this is also disguising an expanding “free agent” population of entrepreneurs and independent contractors who are a dynamic source of innovation in all marketplaces.
  • Inexpensive telehealth (e.g. Skype) and related technology is now helping to reduce the expense of health care (for everyone), while increasing patient satisfaction.
  • Customers are looking for a compelling product/service value proposition that is directed at them specifically, not just the general public. What is your value proposition for me?

These are just a few of the factors that are creating the “new normal.”

Business leaders need to recognize the reaction to the perceived trauma of change, as well as help their co-workers discover the possibilities present for a reconfiguration of philosophy and strategy. The waves are getting bigger and you need the perspective and courage to successfully surf the opportunities.