The world will look different when it emerges from the crunch, as we appear to be doing currently.
The globalization and connectivity of the world are trends that will not go away, and the chaos of the last 12 months will have enabled trends at the fringe to build momentum much more quickly that would have otherwise been the case.
Consider the acceptance, even demand, for increased government intervention in business, something that would have been impossible a year ago, the growth of twitter over the same period, the role pro-active networking of supporters using the web played in the success of the Obama campaign, and the explosion of sales of “green” cars like the Toyota Prius, and Honda’s equivalent at premium prices during a financial meltdown. All examples of disturbance at the periphery of activity which became full blown disruptions at the core in a very short time, motivated during the economic chaos by people seeking new ways to understand and deal with what was going on.
Building adaptability has become a key survival skill, taking lessons from the natural world where many small “experiments” at the fringes builds the capacity of the species to survive as the environment changes around you. It may be that Peter Drucker‘s maxim that the only core competence needed by an organization was innovation has been reinforced, as all the literature on successful innovation cites the ability of an organization to run many experiments as a key component of innovation success.
Anyone thinking the post crash world will look like the pre-crash one needs to think again.