- In Activity 2 of this Lesson, you identified the top 3-5 factors that you felt
- controlled or influenced your industry. One of the things we didn’t discuss at that point, was the
- of your industry – and so the potential success of your business idea. Let’s do that now.
What factors may affect the future of my industry?
Keeping abreast of planned changes in your industry is part and parcel of being a business owner. These changes are usually unavoidable as they are industry-wide and may effect 3 core areas of your business:
- long-term profitability
- policies or procedures
- sales cycles
Let’s look at those 3 core areas in a little more detail to understand the sort of factors that can influence them and why that’s important:
- Any specific and identifiable factor that may increase or decrease your profitability in the long-term can have a direct effect on your financial success. Factors may include federal or local government mandates (which are due to come into force), strong cultural trends, federal investments etc. Some examples may be: planned minimum wage increases, increase/decrease in taxes, implementation of new partner agreements or cessation of old ones, opening or closure of areas of the country to industry (ie forestry/oil) etc.
Policies or Procedures
- Any specific and identifiable industry mandated amendments that will significantly change the way you need to manage your internal administrative policies or procedures. This may include: health and safety requirements, payroll requirements, quality standards, service agreements, privacy policies, contracts or insurance requirements.
- Any specific and identifiable issues which may impact the way the sales cycle is managed with a client and overall, the way you do business. Some examples could be: the availability or shortage of materials; an increase to the government mandated “cooling off” period after a contract is signed; bidding procedures; or a trend towards changing from an in-person to digital business (ie sales via website).
Comments from Case Studies
- We asked our Case Study partners to review this Activity and note down any factors that particularly stood out to them. Things they felt would have an impact on their industry in the near future (1-3 years). We asked them to support any comments if possible.
Here’s what they said:
Geoff: “Looking ahead I don’t see much change to the classic car industry. It is a hobby based industry which has remained constant in terms of interest for many years – with x number of classic car enthusiast clubs currently in Alberta. There will always be a market for classic cars and so there will always be a need to maintain and restore them. My business will be based on providing a reptutable, quality, customer focused service”. Jennifer: “The biggest factor for the future of the health food industry is the continued cultural trend towards the growth of healthy living as a whole. This is reflected not just in food consumption but also in the number of exercise and health focused magazines, websites, gyms, personal trainers etc. The health and wellness market was named as the next trillion dollar industry in Nov 2014 (http://www.womensmarketing.com/blog/2014/11/health-and-wellness-market/ ) and although the health food industry is a subset of that, it is a significant one.” Mike: “There are currently no impacts to the long-term commercial cleaning industry I can identify.” Cindi and Wayne: “It is still unclear how the current down-turn in the oil industry may have an impact on the home construction industry in Alberta. At the moment, it has not impacted our growth but we will continue to monitor this situation carefully.”
- Now it’s your turn. Spend a moment reviewing what you know about your industry and consider any factors you feel
could impact it positively or negatively in the near future (1-3 years)