This time of year brings anticipation, expectation and for many of us, it's a time for planning. With FutureWatch 2011 launching in our upcoming January issue, this time of year has most of us keeping our pulse on the industry and watching the trends even more.
I am a subscriber to McKinsey Quarterly and much like MPI's FutureWatch and Business Barometer products do for the meeting and business events industry, McKinsey's Global Economic Conditions Snapshot sheds an interesting light on how execs around the world are looking at the state of things.
The highlight of the survey results for me was that now more than half of respondents say they are positive about the state of their nations' economies and that they are seeing improvement and 63 percent say their economies are now in recovery. Unfortunately that leaves the others feeling glum—including 35 percent who say they do not expect an upturn in 2011.
At the corporate level, execs are expecting profits to rise along with consumer demand, both of which increased slightly in the last quarter, and most respondents reported that their companies were not going to postpone or cut investments for growth—also a good sign.
A staggering number of respondents (more than 75 percent) said the expect the BRIC nations (Brazil, Russia, India and China) to gain serious influence on the global markets in the next five years and most feel that this increase in influence will come at the expense of the world's developed nations.
The reason? Most feel that more than a quarter of their companies' profits in the next five years will come out of these BRIC nations.
When asked simply how the influence of the economies of these BRIC nations would be different in five years, it was a resounding response that these economies would be stronger—China (92 percent), India (85 percent), Brazil (75 percent) and Russia (46 percent).
The question for me is, of course, what does this mean for the meeting and business event industry?
More delegates from these countries branching out and attending more events around the globe? Probably. Will we see more of a presence from these countries at trade shows around the globe? I hope so. More business being done in these BRIC nations than we've ever seen before? Definitely.
It's a shifting world, and the globe is much smaller than it used to be.