Plus three more for 2023

Over the last few blogs, we’ve looked at some of the more important trends for 2023. 

But before we go too much further, you might be interested to know what makes for something becoming part of 2023’s important trends. According to whataventure.com, trends stem from the tension created between the three critical elements below.

  1. Basic human needs such as being safe and comfortable and therefore affected by emotions, anxieties, etc due to a gap between what they expect and reality.
  2. Drivers of change (like we saw with last blog’s Chat GPT example of AI’s influence)
  3. Innovations whilst not a trend in an of itself, it’s more about how people use basic needs and broader changes at play to bring about adoption of something that better meets customers where they are (think Uber and Uber Eats, AirBnB, etc – even something as now ‘normal’ like a laptop or a smart phone or go back even further to the electric light). 

When it comes to change though, you need to think in terms of shifts and triggers. A shift is a long term change playing out (like generational change or the shift towards sustainability that’s been happening for a couple of decades). Whereas a trigger is a more immediate happening in the environment such as a pandemic, the recession, economic issues, supply chain problems, staff shortages, etc. 

Why might understanding trend markers be important? 

Because if you, as a business owner (or even someone starting a side hustle), can understand consumer expectations (or those of your client) and can spot the gap between what they want now and into the future, then you’ll be better able to create a new offering that serves their needs before anyone even realises what they’re needing and why they’re needing it. Your product or service could end up feeling like ‘just the right thing at the right time.’ 

If you want to be ahead of the trend, rather than just an early adopter (although that can herald promise too), you really need to practice looking at what’s at play in your sector, allied sectors, even unrelated ones and what people are experiencing/wanting instead. Once you hit on something that feels like it’s right for the market, test it. If it works, integrate it into your offerings. If it doesn’t get uptake, try something else. 

That having been said, not every ‘innovation’ gets uptake and makes it into Year X’s important trends. Remember Google Glass? Yep, you’d be forgiven for having forgotten it too. In my memory, this feels more like a something that wasn’t right for the time, had lots of marketing dollars thrown at it, but ended up being more like a fad because the market wasn’t in need of it to fix a critical change-related problem. If you’re looking for your innovation to really be sticky,  make sure you’re solving a very real change related problem. 

From my own perspective, as an accountant, Xero’s close to real time transaction reporting and cloud-base means both accountants and business owners can access their financials wherever they were (aka be more hands-on) and made the end of month/quarter bookkeeping for BAS vastly easier for the swathe of small and micro-businesses that had been popping up since the early 2000’s. It was an idea whose time had come. The same goes for receipt scanning technologies. Oh lordy, when I first started as a junior accountant, the number of shoeboxes of receipts people would bring us. That’s not so much of a thing any longer now there’s receipt scanning built into Xero (and before that SquirrelStreet and ReceiptBank). Cloud accounting and receipt scanning are examples where companies combined technology, a problem and an offering gap at the right time. If this is something that intrigues you, where might you be able to fix a problem that’s in its early stages of emergence – aka people are grumbling about it, but not able to solve it?

As I mentioned earlier, being an early adopter of an emerging trend can also herald rewards. If you’ve got a raging desire to start a business or even a side hustle, have a look at this year’s trends and see if something resonates. Where there’s a trend, there are opportunities. 

And finally below are the final three important trends for 2023. 

Artisanal creations 

The pandemic seems to have had an interesting effect on many people, in that there seems to be a greater drive to work with purpose, or rather to have work be meaningful or working from the heart. It’s been at the heart of the great resignation that we’ve written about previously. But it’s more than just that. This trend combines going smaller with virtuous consumerism and the rise of the intrapreneur (ie: F/T employed person with their own side hustle). It probably also harks back to the ‘trust doom loop’ that has been people both lacking in trust of corporations and reflecting on simpler times. 

But as we’ve seen with artisan market breads, simple doesn’t necessarily mean cheap. From a business owner’s perspective, think if there’s a way you can introduce greater service levels or more a more hand-crafted product to your range (if it fits within your brand) and be prepared to increase your pricing on it. 

Moving from monitoring to mentoring in the workplace

Along with the intergenerational shift that’s currently underway, there’s also a leadership shift that’s moving from a leader who tells you what to do (and monitors for correctness), to a leader that mentors you to be able to think and course correct for yourself. When leadership buys into that sort of model staff move along the experience curve faster, but also move into growth quicker too. That’s the sort of leadership that retains staff; so critical in times where staff retention is a business critical factor. In other words, you want to be able to train people well enough to be valuable elsewhere, but look after them so well, they stay.

Population shifts

You might have noticed that lots of people have moved to Australia’s regional centres as a result of Covid. And even though the Covid threat has now receded a bit, people are still continuing to shift to the regions (including our own). This trend is buoyed by a combination of better technology, a desire for more meaning and more time with friends/family (and less commuting time). Driving this also is a need for greater flexibility in terms of working conditions.  

Hence business owners and leaders need to look at how they can better serve their communities, manage infrastructure and growth in a sustainable way. 

Wondering what can you as a business owner do now? Look to see where the gaps/pain points are for your staff, customers and community and look at where you might be able to help. Or better yet, get your staff and customers involved in creating the solution. After all, a problem shared is a problem halved or so the fable goes. 

Of course, if we can help halve a problem by moving your financials forward by helping you transition to retirement, or into your own business, or transitioning your existing business in the direction of digital transformation via cloud accounting with Xero (especially whilst there are still tax incentives), we’d love to help. You can call us on 6023 1700 or connect with us via Facebook or LinkedIn.

Got a question? Get in touch

If you've got financial or business questions, or you just want to run something by us, we'd be delighted to really talk to you – in person, over the phone - call us on 02 6023 1700 - or you can use the form below and we'll get back to you.

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About us:

Lloyd Accounting is a boutique accounting firm based in North Albury that operates with the sole purpose of making your tax and business affairs as easy as possible. For us, it's about really understanding what it is you're wanting to achieve and then using our experience and expertise to help facilitate that.

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Lloyd Accounting is now located at 932 Waugh Rd, North Albury, NSW.

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