2020 already feels like a distant memory in some ways. It’s three years later, and the world has gone back to what you would describe as normal when it comes to people getting out there and living their lives. Blockbuster movies are raking in the big bucks, international travel is alive and as chaotic as it ever was, and masks are an exception rather than the norm. But the pandemic era also kickstarted several major changes in the way that businesses are being run, whether they were directly related to COVID-19 or not.

People starting their own companies today are looking at a very different landscape. There are major forces that are going to shape the next several years and decades, let alone the next several months. Businesses need to understand these forces. They need to learn how they’re going to adapt to them if they want to survive.

Continuing Turbulence In The Market

Without wanting to strike an unnecessarily pessimistic note, it seems fair to say that market turbulence is not going anywhere anytime soon. Things may have leveled off in stages following the rollercoaster of the last couple of years. But you only need to look across the Atlantic to see how the cost of living is wounding businesses in the United Kingdom to see that hard times are always around the corner. New businesses are going to need to figure out how they can work more efficiently and build a security cushion if they want to be in this for the long haul.

Application security testing is a great example of this. New software developers must conduct lengthy and rigorous security testing to ensure that their application hits the market in its best possible state. It can be time-consuming and a drain on resources, but app security testing software improves efficiency by folding that testing into the development process. For more information about how this software works, visit ForAllSecure. Their Mayhem software allows businesses to waste less time and pre-empt future threats.

Climate Change Is Not Going Anywhere

It certainly looks as though climate change is going to be the defining challenge for most people in the coming years. It really came into sharp focus in 2020 as people were able to see how nature responded when our behavior changed. Now, there are extreme weather events on a rolling basis. People in Texas have seen deep freezes that were truly shocking, and the summer will surely bring more stories about terrible wildfires. Record temperatures and record rainfalls are going to continue. That means that every business owner needs to think about their company’s sustainability strategy and how they can have a positive impact.

There have been policies made by governments around the world that should help to make a difference, but it’s worth noting that any potential customers and clients will also want to know what your company is doing to keep your carbon footprint down before they spend their money with you. Sustainability can come from a lot of different places. But things as simple as using recycled and recyclable materials for your packaging can make a big difference. So can using electric vehicles, and investing in machinery that is more energy efficient.

Understanding Of Mental Health Is Still Developing

Burnout was of the major buzzwords to come out of the last couple of years. Now, to be clear, burnout is far more than a catchphrase, but it seemed as though everyone was finally starting to catch on. There was a forced focus on mental health in the workplace as everyone started dealing with these huge challenges while working from home. Some companies took it very seriously, and others didn’t. Burnout and stress were certainly two of the factors behind the massive Great Resignation and Quiet Quitting movements that have taken place in the last twelve months or so. Business owners need to ensure that they are prioritizing the mental health of their employees if they are going to continue to operate at the kind of level that they need to.

Many companies have decided to include mental health support in their benefits packages, including options for remote therapy (which has seen a massive boom in recent years). There has been some added emphasis on the importance of clocking in and out at the appropriate times and ensuring that no work messages are being sent after office hours. Remote working has created some challenges when it comes to loneliness, but employers and employees have taken advantage of the flexibility it provides. This allows employees to attend to other responsibilities during the day as long as their work gets done. It’s clear that there is still a lot of work to do in this area, but it seems as though progress is being made.

Image credit: Sean Pollock via Unsplash

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