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It’s no surprise that much has been written on the changes and challenges faced by 21st century organizations. The rapid evolution of technology and macro global economic factors only further challenge management to access and adapt to the changing landscape. Successful leaders will remain mindful of these five organizational thrusts:

  1. Convergence: The future increasingly depends on convergence — combining previously siloed content and data to make information available on a common user interface on any smartphone, tablet, or other device. Business and technology will fuse into an integrated system of communication, collaboration, and knowledge exchange.
  2. Innovation: New business models, enterprises, and marketplaces will be created. Look for the areas of personal health enhancement, interactive nanotechnology, and on-demand supply chains to emerge. With such innovation, businesses will find it necessary to capture and analyze customer information about product and service use, needs, wants, desires, and behavior.
  3. Knowledge Engineering: The creation of knowledge networks will be the underlying foundation of the 21st century organization. These networks will be both internal as well as external, and will rapidly change as the markets evolve.
  4. Emerging Markets: Expect and anticipate the disruptions coming in the form of emerging markets, electronic exchanges, security breaches, and changing customer demographics.
  5. Human Capital: The value of human talent and your workforce will become even more crucial in the rapidly changing marketplace. Constant calibration of required skill sets will be the biggest challenge facing managers and leaders.

The organization of the future will need leaders that are aware of how to attract talent, manage innovation, set high visions, and execute profitably. Not necessarily a change from the past, but a reminder that the pace of technology convergence in business is accelerating the need for the application and adoption of these skills.