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Business Trends to Exploit from 2012

Saturday, December 1, 2012
The Society for the Advancement of Consulting® has asked its global members to comment on what business trends in 2012 are worth continued priority. "Fads are ephemeral, but trends endure," says SAC CEO Alan Weiss, PhD. "Here's what we're learning from out clients."

"As a global business consultant and operations strategist, I’ve seen a few critical business trends emerge in 2012," points out Lisa Anderson, President of LMA Consulting Group, Inc. in Claremont, CA. (www.lma-consultinggroup.com). Increased pressures and deadlines are here to stay as standing out from the crowd requires new thinking combined with flawless execution. Instead of being stuck in survival mode, take a step back and review your strategy. Are you geared to elevating service levels while accelerating speed—to market, to customer delivery, to making informed decisions? If not, you’ll be left in the dust."

Lisa Nirell, founder of EnergizeGrowth® in Alexandria, VA, marks 2012 as a big shift in business-to-business relationships. Lisa, a seasoned author and strategic marketing advisor, states that, "In the past, buyers largely depended on face to face interactions—including your body language—to select vendors and advisors. Today’s research reveals that nearly two-thirds of executives read your digital body language—your online presence and brand—before they are willing to engage with someone from your company.

Lisa adds, "2012 was the year that successful companies took content development, social media marketing, and online community building to a whole new level. They will be the breakthrough companies to watch."

Dr. Maynard Brusman is a San Francisco Bay Area executive coach and consulting psychologist. He is the president of Working Resources, a strategic talent management consulting firm (www.workingresources.com).

Dr. Brusman notes: "What can business leaders learn from San Francisco Giants baseball manager Bruce Bochy, who led two diverse teams to World Series championships in three years? The secret lies in his communication skills, humility, confidence and ability to manage away from a superstar mentality. Bochy epitomizes what management consultant Jim Collins calls a ‘level-five leader,' someone who can transform a company from good to great through a paradoxical combination of personal humility plus professional will. A level-five leader acts with quiet, calm determination and relies on inspiration, not charisma to motivate. He demonstrates an unwavering resolve to do whatever it takes to produce results, no matter how difficult."

There were two key lessons for business in 2012, according to John Carroll, growth consultant and president of Unlimited Performance, Inc. in Mount Pleasant, SC www.uperform.com. "The U.S. presidential election saw many hovering in a wait-and-see posture. Savvy leaders found ways to advance and improve their teams and their outcomes," Carroll says. "That’s the first lesson. Find a way to move forward whatever the external environment. Be sufficiently agile to take what the market is giving you.

"Second, take care of people in such a way that they in turn take care of business. You don’t have to give away the store to engender enduring loyalty and discretionary effort," says Carroll. "Interact with team members and create systems that appeal to the enlightened self-interest of team members within the framework of organizational objectives. Give them a chance to shine in ways that meet their needs and desired results will follow.

 
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