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With the new year in full swing, we are all dying to know what the next 10 months have in store for us! We are also curious to know what it is we can do to make 2018 better, in all aspects of our lives.

For many of us, the start of the new business year is a great opportunity to develop and implement strategies and methods that can help take our businesses to the next level. In an era where the world is more connected and globalised than ever, it is necessary that one keeps their ear to the ground so that they don’t find themselves lagging behind the rest. This rings true, especially in the business world.

With that being said, we thought it would be insightful to look at 5 trends Forbes.com has predicted will take the business world by storm this 2018.

  • Freelance Workforce – While having permanent, in-house employees seems like the safest and most beneficial way of doing business, it is a practice that is gradually dying out. Many small business owners have come to realise the benefits of opting for a freelance workforce.  It allows you to call in labour that you essentially need, when you need it. This not only enables you to create a lean budget without any ridiculous overheads, but it also accommodates the unpredictable nature of business. If your company is on a bit of a go-slow, you can adjust accordingly without worrying about letting employees go.
  • Wellness at Work – It is no secret that people are increasingly becoming cautious of their health and well-being. People not only seek balance and simplicity in their lives, but they believe in working smarter and not necessarily harder. As a result, companies are trying to create a working environment that is good for their employees’ overall wellbeing.
  • Diversity – With all the diversity and inequality injustices that were brought to light in 2017, companies have no choice but to transform. Customers now demand that companies drive social change through business and capital investment. They also expect more representation for all diverse groups in business.
  • Millennials welcome Generation Z – Generation Z (those born after 1998) are now taking centre stage. With a lot of them now entering college and the workforce, their rising influence in business shouldn’t be ignored. Millennials are filling managerial and senior roles, so it’s important that they take time to understand the generation born with devices in hand.
  • Customer contact by text – Consumers are fast getting tired of the impersonal and inconsistent service they are receiving from companies. They want to feel as though they know the business personally. This has called for the need for customer service communication via text (Facebook app, iMessage, Whatsapp, etc.). Text communication provides the 24/7 customer experience unlike set calling hours or email.

If you’re looking to keep up with the global business world then these are the trends that should be at the top of your list!