As a news publisher, journalist, interviewer, tech enthusiast and channel guy, I get to see many different points of view from some of the smartest people in the industry. I also have access to a very large amount of research data which I always take with a grain of salt as we know that data is only a reflection of a point of time in the past, and there are many factors that can change projections.
After digesting these “inputs,” here is my final thoughts about 2023:
[See below this for a few of my favourite video interviews about what to expect and do in 2023.]
- A general slowdown in technology and the economy is happening, however, how much of a slowdown is debatable. Shipments of “tin” are down 16% in 2022, but that is still better than in 2019, which was a good year. We’ve all heard about the latest industry layoffs, but that figure is probably impacted by a correction from the over-hiring frenzy fuelled by the pandemic and the incredible demand for digital transformation and cybersecurity. These layoffs, in my opinion, are good news for other industries looking to hire more tech talent. We actually see the employment movements of a lot of people in the industry and it looks like everyone who wants a job will be able to find one.
- Investor funding is already tighter (began in 2022) because the cost of borrowing money is rising and the gloomy economic outlook. When balancing risk versus reward, the margin of error has shrunk significantly. This is likely to continue until interest rates are lower and the economy recovers. Getting cheap money is a drug that investors have become addicted, however, watch out for the smart investors who see this as an opportunity and double down on their investments.
- Channel partners should not be concerned if their business is in order, but they should also not stand still. Now is the time to grow wisely. It’s time to scoop up more clients from competitors who either missed the boat or are about to retire. Whatever you do, you must increase your investment in cybersecurity and digital transformation services. It is also critical that you improve your AI skills, as this is the next rocket fuel for tech growth, and it’s already here.
- Vendors should prioritize their current customers in order to better serve, retain, and grow them, but they should not stop recruiting. Companies that continue to recruit will eat away at their competitors until they die of a thousand cuts. The key is to make wise investments in channel teams, awareness, partner recruitment, and partner management. Make the partner experience incredible! Find new hangouts where your prospects congregate. And, keep in mind that if you haven’t yet simplified the way your partners do business with you, you’re already behind the curve. Here is a big thought: “Double down on improving your team’s weakest links” and you will see significantly more success (I am working on an article about why weak-links matters more than strong-links moving forward – subscribe if you want to get it).
- Your superpower as a business is how you service your clients, which includes doing business smarter in a digital-first economy. Your primary goal is to improve the experience of your customers, employees, and suppliers. In today’s digital-first economy, smart leadership in navigating the digital landscape matters.
- It’s probably wise not to compare this “recession” to previous ones. Today, there are 5 billion people on the internet, and the world has changed EXTREMELY – work from anywhere, gig economy, AI, really smart phones, 5G, living through and with the pandemic, and so much more. Even just 5 years ago, the world was very different. As a result, in this new world, traditional economic measurements simply do not have the same impact. It’s time for a 2.0 upgrade in economic thinking. This debate is heating up in the community as the old-thinkers try to fit the new world into their traditional box and the new-thinkers believe the world has already outgrown the box.
- Make an investment in yourself! It may seem obvious, but it’s amazing how many people simply do not want to learn new stuff or explore new ideas. Deepen and widen your expertise. Malcolm Gladwell stated that it takes 10,000 hours to become an expert; I believe that today and with some AI assistance, you can probably do it in half the time. So much information and knowledge is now at your fingertips. Use it!
- Sure, it is likely that there will be some economic pain for the next year or so, so governments and everyone must reach out to ensure that no one is left behind. It is ALWAYS a good time to be helping others so just help without any expectations. It’s also good for the mind, body and soul.
- Last comment – try not to spend too much of your time on the current economic situation. The digital transformation of the world is still in its early stages, and what comes next will be unrecognizable to most people. Will it be for the better or for the worse? I can’t say because it depends on the person. I can easily live in a digital world because I am one of the humans who contributed in some small way to its construction. But, I can’t say I prefer the digital world (I still like driving with a stick-shift rather than automatic and I do not want some insurance company tracking my driving habits). The reality is that no one can stop the digitization of everything, so you must embrace it or be miserable.
Check some of my favourite eChannelNEWS interviews on 2023 predictions: