“When you focus on the good, the good gets better.” — Abraham Hicks
I find it helpful to learn life trends since consumer behaviors, values, and mindsets shape the enterprise and beyond.
There are so many interesting ideas when it comes to trends shaping life from Augmented Humanity to Sensehacking to Slow Living to you name it.
That said, I like when there’s a useful set of trends to inspire creative juices and get ready for the road ahead.
Accenture has an interesting report called Accenture Life Trends 2023.
The main theme of the report is to prepare for the future by embracing the trends and insights that will shape it.
Summary of the Life Trends
Here are the five key Life Trends, according to Accenture:
- Trend 1 — I Will Survive
- Trend 2 — Iem a Believer
- Trend 3 — As It Was
- Trend 4 — OK, Creativity
- Trend 5 — Signed, Sealed, Delivered
Let’s explore each trend, along with my favorite notes from their report…
1. Trend 1 – I will survive
Accenture’s “The Human Paradox” report found that people often struggle to reconcile their personal values with practical realities, leading to inconsistency in their actions.
Those living in emerging markets are often better at adapting to instability and bad news, as they have more experience dealing with it.
People will increasingly speak out against injustice, even if it comes with significant personal risk.
From the report:
- In their report, The Human Paradox, Accenture found that people are allowing themselves to be inconsistent as they reconcile personal values with practical realities.
- People in emerging markets have so much more experience in dealing with instability that when they get bad news, they get upset, then they simply keep going. This ability to adapt generally far outstrips people used to living in mature markets.
- People will increasingly raise their voices against injustice–in some cases, at the risk of significant personal cost.
Trend 2 – I’m a Believer
The need for a sense of belonging is fundamental for humans and has been fulfilled through digital interest groups.
However, traditional social media platforms no longer feel as social, and communities are now forming around digital collectibles, such as art, autographs, and even virtual sneakers, created using Non-Fungible Tokens (NFTs).
Customers are willing to pay premium prices for innovative and compelling experiences.
From the report:
- A sense of belonging is one of humanity’s most basic needs–the feeling of being happy or comfortable as part of a group. In recent years, people have found belonging through interest groups on digital channels.
- Social platforms don’t feel so social anymore.
- Communities are forming around digital collectibles, which include things like art, autographs, trading cards, brand catalogues, and even more important moments in news/history/sports. For example, Nike has created virtual sneakers and collectibles using NFTs (Non-Fungible Tokens).
- Customers have proven time and again they will pay premium prices for innovation and compelling experiences.
Trend 3 – As It Was
As some people resist returning to pre-COVID work rituals, others miss the rewards of being together in-person.
The lack of in-person engagement raises questions about the future of mentorship, innovation, culture, and inclusion in the workplace.
The return to the office is not yet a success, and leadership needs to adopt a fresh approach to move things forward.
People miss the social interactions of being in an office, and productivity should be measured by outcomes, not just output.
Innovation is fueled by exposure to new experiences and ideas, and creativity suffers when people don’t venture out to explore new fields of interest or emerging trends.
People will only return to the office for the promise of community, relationships, and enrichment in their careers, and it is the responsibility of leadership to deliver these factors.
From the Report:
- Many continue to resist a return to pre-Covid work rituals, while others crave the rewards of being together.
- Without in-person engagement, what happens to mentorship? To innovation? To culture? To inclusion?
- The return to the office is not yet a success and leadership must take a fresh approach if they want to move things forward in the right ways.
- People miss being together to share in birthday cake, gossip, and inconsequential pop culture chats.
- Measuring “productivity” generally focuses on output and fails to quantify what really matters: outcomes.
- Innovation is also fueled by unconscious observation, as exposure to the world beyond the home office brings color to people’s lived experience. If nobody ventures out to investigate new fields of interest or looks deeper into emerging trends, creativity will suffer.
- People will only be willing to come to the office for the promise of community, relationships, and factors that enrich their careers, and the responsibility to deliver these things lies with leadership.
Trend 4 – OK, Creativity
Artificial Intelligence (AI) is becoming increasingly accessible to people for creative purposes, allowing anyone to produce something new. Creativity is a process that produces outcomes, such as art or music, and is influenced by environmental and social norms.
AI is shifting from enterprise and service enablement to something that is highly visible and applicable to all parts of people’s lives, similar to the shift in computing from mainframe to PC.
The accessibility of deep learning models has grown, which has led some to question whether creativity is under threat, but this is seen as a natural cycle of progress. Companies will need to find ways to stand out in a world inundated with user-generated content, and AI is becoming a challenger to search engines in generating accurate and useful text.
From the report:
- AI is now in people’s hands for creativity.
- While there’s no consensus on the definition of “creativity,” in this context it’s the ability to produce something new. It’s a process that results in an outcome, like art, books, or music.
- Creativity evolves culture–influenced by environmental and social norms, and the motivations that push people to follow, reject, or change those norms.
- Technology is now acting as a co-pilot that sits alongside anyone who’s interesting in harnessing their innate creativity.
- Companies will need to work out how to make an impact in a world inundated with creative user-generated content.
- ChatGPT suggests a big leap forward in AI’s ability to create accurate and useful text, which may become a major challenger to search engines.
- AI is shifting from enterprise and service enablement (which is often invisible) to something that is highly visible and applicable in all parts of people’s lives–not unlike the shift in computing from mainframe to PC.
- The speed with which the accessibility of deep learning models has grown in making people question whether creativity is under existential threat, but we would argue this is simply another variation of the natural cycle of progress.
Trend 5 – Signed, Sealed, Delivered
A digital identity crisis is happening, and people may soon regain control through digital wallets containing tokens to represent their ID, payment methods, loyalty cards, and more.
Dark patterns have been used to persuade or influence people to give up their data, money, and time, increasing friction in people’s internet experience.
Tokenization could be a win-win for people and marketers, as blockchain technology shifts the power dynamics to users and puts them in control of their digital identity through non-transferable fungible tokens stored in digital wallets. Digital identity, objects, and assets will increasingly be stored in a wallet online.
Web3 and wallets enable people to take their data with them and share it with or even sell it to brands and companies they trust.
From the report:
- A digital identity crisis is going on and brands should take note.
- The status quo of how personal data is used–and even misused–is long overdue for a change, and people may soon regain control through digital wallets containing tokens to represent ID, payment methods, loyalty cards, and more.
- Crucially, the default will be that they’ll decide how much data they share with organizations.
- Dark patterns, which are design tactics that persuade or heavily influence people to make certain choices, have been tricking internet users into giving up their data, money, and time.
- In addition to privacy concerns, the friction in people’s internet experience has been increasing.
- We see signs that tokenization could be a win-win for people and for marketers.
- The rise of digital ownership, through blockchain technology, is shifting the power dynamics to users by putting them in control of their digital identity through non-transferable fungible tokens stored in digital wallets.
- Digital identity, objects, and assets will increasingly be stored in a “wallet” online.
- The promise of Web3 (and what wallets enable) is the ability for people to take their data with them and share it with–or even sell it to–brands and companies they trust.
Embracing Change: Navigating the Future of Life
“The Future of Life: Accenture Life Trends 2023 and Beyond” report provides a comprehensive overview of the trends and insights that will shape our world over the next decade and beyond.
The report highlights the impact of emerging technologies, changing demographics, and evolving societal values on the way we live, work, and interact with each other.
From sustainability in software development to the rise of digital collectibles and the future of work, the report offers valuable insights for businesses and individuals looking to navigate a rapidly changing world. As we move forward, it is essential that we embrace these trends and adapt to the changing landscape to create a more sustainable and equitable future for all.
The report reminds us that we must work together to build a future that benefits both people and the planet, and that by doing so, we can create a world that is truly worth living in.
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