It’s really nice when someone in the audience writes a spot on article that captures the essence of your keynote.
That’s the case with Trucks, Parts, Service bills itself as “the only media entity in the trucking industry that caters exclusively to dealer and independent aftermarket professionals.” It’s a nice writeup!
“The Five Truths of the Future” – Truck Parts Service
TPS, February 16, 2020
The American Truck Dealers (ATD) looked into the great unknown during the general session at this year’s 2020 ATD Show Saturday in Las Vegas with noted futurist Jim Carroll.
Offering his five truths of the future, Carroll told the ATD audience that the speed of change, which has always been overwhelming, is only increasing as technology advances.
He says the most successful businesses of the future won’t be the largest companies, who attempt to push out all competition, but the fastest companies, who can adapt new innovation and product advancements into their business to improve customer experiences.
Carroll believes that shift will benefit truck dealers who remain focused on the industry’s Prime Directive — to maximize uptime and be a key partner for their customers. “You have moved from selling a truck to selling a service level uptime guarantee,” he says.
But as uncertain as the future may be, Carroll says there are some truths truck dealers (and all businesses) can rely on.
- The future is bigger than you think: Connectivity and globalization means change and innovation will come from anywhere. No business or market will be spared. Carroll uses the shift toward mass customization and retail delivery as two examples, noting dealers should be prepared to see innovations in other industries have an impact on the truck world.
- The future we are all reading about is happening right now all around us: Connectivity is the new horsepower. Today’s biggest businesses are investing in research and development, not inventory. Carroll says the innovations that will change the trucking industry in five years exist today.
- Undeniable trends with the science, technology and disrupters surrounding mobility: Another area where Carroll says the future is here now. The push toward electrification and automation won’t reverse. Neither will the growing importance of last-mile delivery. Truck dealers must accept these changes as the status quo of the future.
- Although the future happens, it happens but eventually: Every trend goes through the Gartner Hype Cycle, where it is released to immediate acclaim only to be followed by a period of skepticism and concern before adoption rates increase and the trend becomes the reality. He says culture tends to overestimate the rate of change on a two-year basis but underestimate the rate of change on a 10-year basis. “The future happens slow and then all at once, but very unevenly,” he says.
- The kids have arrived: Half of the world’s population is less than 25 years old. This is a population that has grown up with connectivity, mobile devices, social media. Carroll says their worldview completely different from the generations that preceded them. Truck dealers should be welcoming in these young people and their fresh views of the world into their business.