As many businesses struggle to adapt to fast-changing market conditions, their leaders will need to keep an open mind and remain flexible to stay innovative and responsive to new trends. Successful business managers and future entrepreneurs must combine creative thinking about markets with business solutions that use new tools and techniques to extract useful intelligence from the massive data pools being generated.
For instance, business planning and market forecast tools based on artificial intelligence (AI), automation, and other advanced technologies are allowing entrepreneurs to be more creative when it comes to reaching their target audience. According to a PricewaterhouseCoopers survey, 20% of organizations “plan to implement AI enterprise-wide” this year, handing off repetitive heavy-lifting tasks to machines and focusing employees’ human efforts on other parts of the business. With AI integration and automation rising, entrepreneurs can prepare for success in future markets by focusing on creativity and collaboration opportunities driven by the new tech-integrated business world.
How Future Entrepreneurs Can Prepare for Success
Future entrepreneurs, business people, and business students can prepare for success in the markets and industries of tomorrow by thinking creatively about business problems. They will need to apply advanced analytics techniques — such as automation and AI — to generate creative future business ideas for 2020 and devise business plans to help their organizations achieve their goals.
Foster Collaboration and Communication in Business
As technology advances and business moves to an even more global scale, shifts will occur not only in the future of business ideas but also in how people interact. Many companies are employing people from around the world based on their skill and interest instead of their geographic location. As John Edwards, the chief information officer of Red Lion Hotels, notes in a Forbes article: “Physical location makes no difference. It’s all about shared workspace.” Whereas historically shared workspace was meant in the literal sense of working in communal office settings, it now means people are geographically apart but connected through technology.
How people collaborate in person is evolving too. Instead of brainstorming individually and conducting weekly or biweekly meetings to gather ideas, many companies are moving to open workspaces and daily catch-ups to promote collaboration. Startups with tangentially related areas of focus are working in the same spaces with the intent of accelerating the formation of good ideas between them.
Current and future entrepreneurs can stay up-to-date with these changes in creative workspaces and intercompany collaborations using advanced skills tailored to those areas. Advanced degrees, such as an online master’s in business administration, allow students to gain or sharpen skill sets in analytical thinking, technology, communication, and leadership. Such preparation may prove critical to the future success of managers and executives who need to identify opportunities, anticipate obstacles, and devise and implement winning business strategies.
Use Automation and AI to Maximize Creativity
Technological advances that lead to disruptions in the workplace often end up adding more jobs than they replace. A 2018 report by the World Economic Forum (WEF) predicts that while automation, AI, and other related technologies could ultimately displace about 75 million positions currently filled by human workers, the same technologies may lead to the creation of 133 million new jobs.
These new employment opportunities — which the WEF describes as “more adapted to the new division of labor between humans, machines, and algorithms” — could allow for more creative freedom within roles that can be partially automated. Business people who possess the right training, skills, and growth mindset can capitalize on this workplace evolution.
Similarly, in an article for Forbes, entrepreneur Alexandro Pando notes that the internet of things (IoT) — the ability of interconnected devices to interact without human-to-human or human-to-computer input — will further contribute to the replacement of repetitive, routine-focused tasks while permitting human jobs to be creative and focused on interaction. With the routine aspects of a job handled by technology, entrepreneurs can focus their energy on innovative solutions and the creation of completely new ideas.
In addition to freeing professionals from rote tasks, there are other ways artificial intelligence — the process by which machines use data to make human-type decisions — may impact business creativity in the future. For example, future entrepreneurs may use AI to predict the effectiveness of marketing content, estimate the chances that it will go viral, and identify potentially offensive content before it goes live, according to Forbes contributor Jason Smikle. Thus, not only would this application change how businesses create content, but it can also help them avoid missteps.
Explore New Ways to Reach and Interact with Customers
Tools like mobility, social media, and digital feedback loops fundamentally change the way businesses engage and interact with their customers. The future of business ideas will include data analysis techniques to attract new customers and retain existing ones by listening carefully, responding deliberately, and then listening some more.
One such way data feedback is impacting customer relations is through improving customer support with technology. Researchers are developing AI-powered software solutions, including sentiment analysis technology, that will become capable of discerning fluctuations in tone when processing customer interactions and tailoring customer support responses as required, according to a Forbes article by Lilach Bullock. This ability to gauge human emotion and respond accordingly may greatly improve the client and customer experience, which will reflect well on the company. Bullock writes that using AI in the customer experience process may give “better, more dynamic answers, and quicker,” and may minimize the time needed for an employee to answer questions and provide solutions. The article notes this AI integration in customer-based strategies may help “build stronger engagement and consumer trust.”
Develop Future Business Ideas for 2020 and Beyond
Planning for the future of business will require entrepreneurs to stay up to date on global and tech-integrated business practices. With AI, automation, and other technologies driving the world of business into new intersections of data and creativity, it will be crucial for entrepreneurs to be knowledgeable about potential future business ideas for 2020 and beyond. Gaining that knowledge through an advanced education, such as Maryville University’s online business degrees, can help current and future entrepreneurs find success in the business world to come. Study now and learn the advanced skills in technology, communication, and business strategies to prepare for a range of evolving business landscapes.