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'Trendspotting' key to long-term success

There are seven key trends worth keeping an eye on if in-house legal professionals are to ensure effective team processes in the future, new insights have revealed.

user iconEmma Musgrave 07 September 2021 Corporate Counsel
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Marty Resnick, vice president analyst at Gartner said executive leaders need to look beyond the pandemic and work to actively prepare their response to seven key themes that will likely impact their organisation in the short-to-medium term.

The first trend, Mr Resnick said, relates to the evolution, impact and disruption of technology change, including things like augmented human experience devices and privacy-enhancing computation.

The second falls back on attitudes, institutions and legislation shifting the political environment, while the third is cited as factors in the local and global economic environment that influence businesses and governments.


The fourth trend identified by Mr Resnick is attitudes, behaviors and lifestyles of individuals and societal groups. This, he said, includes the redefinition of work in a post-pandemic marketplace.

The fifth trend is ethical expectations, behaviors, duties and biases of people and companies toward one another and society; the sixth is changes in laws and governmental policies and regulations to reward or punish particular behaviors; and the seventh is technical, political, economic, cultural, ethical and legal changes supporting environmental protection and sustainability. The latter includes things such as digitally enabled sustainability tools.

“To succeed in a disruptive future, enterprises must continuously scan and respond to disruptions that will impact and/or threaten to protect the company’s place in the markets where they’ve chosen to compete. These disruptions can undo the digital transformation companies have worked so hard to achieve,” Mr Resnick said.

“Executive leaders must evaluate a variety of trends, beyond just technology, and their impact on strategic planning.”

Mr Resnick noted that companies across the board need to be deliberate about scouting for trends by incorporating "trendspotting", which he defined as the acquisition and evaluation of trends that may impact the organisation, adding that a recent survey found "only 38 per cent of organisations performing trendspotting had a defined or formal process".

“A deliberate approach ensures that executive leaders consider trends and disruptions that exist outside of their core responsibilities, where emerging trends might be more familiar,” Mr Resnick said.

“Executives who are not adequately trendspotting already likely will miss critical inputs to their strategic assumptions and planning. This leaves their organisation exposed to blind spots and risk, limiting their ability to capitalise on these opportunities.”

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