Design the future with an impactful 2024 Map

Design the future with an impactful 2024 Map

As we approach 2024, the need to adapt and evolve in response to global challenges and opportunities has never been more evident. The past years have provided us with deep insights into geopolitical tensions, environmental concerns, and the rapid pace of technological change. For businesses and leaders, this is a critical time to reassess strategies and forge a path toward a resilient and sustainable future.

The ongoing journey has been marked by an acceleration in digitalization, a reshaping of social and talent dynamics, and the need to address systemic risks amidst persistent uncertainty. It’s essential to leverage the lessons learned in recent years, building on successes and re-evaluating areas for improvement. This is the time to identify major trends and craft a proactive, transformative plan for the years ahead.

Your success in life isn’t based on your ability to simply change. It is based on your ability to change faster than your competition, customers and business.” — Mark Sanborn.

This sentiment echoes the need for continuous adaptation and rethinking in our fast-evolving world. We continue to grapple with geopolitical unrest, climate challenges, pandemic impacts, and supply chain disruptions. However, we’ve also witnessed significant strides in digital transformation, innovative work models, and leaps in areas like Artificial Intelligence.

The new chair of the Nobel foundation, Astrid Söderbergh Wedding, shared at the Nobel ceremonies the important message set out for the Nobel Prize by Alfred Nobel, where he believed in the unique power of science, literature and actions of peace to contribute to the world for the benefit of humanity, and where international collaboration and respect for knowledge is foundational (see the 6 min inspirational message below)

As we enter 2024, let’s embrace it with renewed hope, determination, and a mindset geared towards seizing opportunities.

We’ve developed an updated framework to guide you through 2024, focusing on five pivotal trends that will shape the landscape for leaders and businesses:
  • Technology Accelerated Innovation, incl Responsible AI
  • Environment, Climate, and Resource Challenges
  • Talent, Social & Changing Work
  • Business Model, Ecosystem and Globalisation Shift
  • Trust, Security, and Regulation

We have updated and renewed the insights of trends, and for each trend, we provide continuously updated Intelligence Maps, Briefing, and Curated Podcast Lists.

To handle the challenges, we need to increase our monitoring and insights and be prepared to innovate, adjust our strategies and reactions under the ongoing uncertainty, and align our resources with speed.

Change is inevitable. Growth is optional.” – John C. Maxwell

Below, we outline strategies to help you define your value proposition and create impactful plans for yourself and your organization in 2024.

This guide aims to inspire leadership at the board and executive levels and drive business change. We also provide intelligence maps, briefings, curated podcast lists, and book recommendations.

Our insights are also shared in keynote speeches, content sharing, virtual and blended courses, and in the board networks as the board networks Digoshen Exploring Leaders and Boards Impact Forum.

As the Intelligence maps, Briefings and Curated Podcasts are regularly updated, we hope you can use all this content as inspiration and come back to them as a reference.

Top Five Essential Trends to watch in 2024

Trend 1: Technology Accelerated Innovation, incl Responsible AI

In the realm of Technology Accelerated Innovation, we are navigating through a period where embracing transformation is imperative. This era is characterized not merely by technological advancements but by a fundamental shift in our interaction with technology across all facets of life and work. There is an the urgent need for businesses to integrate technology at the core of their operations and strategies.

Every company is a software company. You have to start thinking and operating like a digital company.” – Sauté Nadella, CEO Microsoft

Digital Transformation and Cybersecurity
The integration of digital technologies is at the forefront of this transformation. The imperative to digitalize business operations is no longer a future consideration but a present reality. Cybersecurity, in this landscape, becomes not just a protective measure but a fundamental business enabler. With the rise in digital dependency, the threat landscape is evolving, necessitating robust cyberresilliencce measures to protect organizational assets and maintain customer trust.

Artificial Intelligence and Automation
The adoption of Artificial Intelligence (AI) has seen a remarkable increase. According to McKinsey’s global surveys, AI adoption has doubled since 2017, with substantial integration into service operations and product offerings. The transformative power of AI and automation is reshaping industries, from automating routine tasks to enabling advanced predictive analytics. Chatbots, powered by platforms like OpenAI’s ChatGPT, are revolutionizing customer service interactions, demonstrating the practical applications and potentials of AI.

Metaverse and Web 3.0
The rise of the Metaverse and Web 3.0 represents a significant shift in digital interaction and commerce. The Metaverse, an immersive virtual reality space, is seeing substantial investments, with Meta (formerly Facebook) investing billions in its development. The augmented and virtual reality market is projected to grow exponentially, significantly impacting sectors like healthcare, education, and retail. This virtual expansion provides a new frontier for customer engagement and service delivery.

Data, Cloud Solutions, and Connectivity
In today’s digital landscape, data is a key asset driving strategic decisions. The rise in data volumes and the advent of cloud solutions have democratized data access, enabling businesses to utilize data analytics for insight. Effective data management ensures integrity and security, essential for trust and efficiency.

Data monetization is increasingly important, with businesses harnessing data for targeted marketing, personalized services, or data-driven client solutions. This not only improves customer experiences but also opens new markets.

The integration of external data sources with existing data sets significantly enhances value, offering a more comprehensive understanding and informed decision-making. This integration can lead to improved predictions and customer insights.

Advancements in technologies like 5G are catalyzing innovation in areas from smart vehicles to telehealth. The synergy of data, cloud computing, and robust connectivity is pivotal in the digital realm, promising continued growth and transformation.

Materials and Health Technology Innovation
We are also witnessing a materials revolution, marked by the development of responsive materials and nanotechnologies, which are pivotal in advancing sustainability and efficiency. In the health sector, innovation has accelerated dramatically, with advancements in vaccine development, gene editing, and drug discovery processes, reshaping the healthcare landscape.

In summary, as we navigate through 2024 and beyond, embracing these technological innovations is crucial for businesses to stay relevant, competitive, and resilient in a rapidly evolving global landscape. Board members and leaders must not only recognize these trends but actively integrate them into their strategic planning to harness their transformative potential.

Find continuous insights on the topic of Technology Accelerated Innovation, incl Responsible AI from our Intelligence Maps, Briefing, and Curated Podcast Lists:

>> Technology Accelerated Innovation, incl Responsible AI



Trend 2: Environment, Climate, and Resources Challenges

In addressing the Environment, Climate, and Resource Challenges, a growing urgency is felt worldwide, with climate change and resource scarcity becoming pivotal concerns for governments, businesses, and individuals alike. there is an the intrinsic link between our well-being and the health of our planet, emphasizing the immediate need for action in the face of environmental challenges.

The truth is: the natural world is changing. And we are totally dependent on that world. It provides our food, water and air. It is the most precious thing we have and we need to defend it.” – Sir David Attenborough

Sustainability and ESG Initiatives
The integration of environmental sustainability into business strategies is more pressing than ever. In 2024, the emphasis on addressing climate change impacts and resource management is not just a matter of environmental responsibility but also of economic and operational viability. In 2023, the United States alone,experienced extreme weather events costing approximately $80 billion, marking a significant increase in the financial impact of climate disasters. This year recorded the highest number of billion-dollar disasters, with 25 such events, driven by factors such as climate change and population shifts into more vulnerable areas. These figures underscore the escalating economic and societal costs of climate-related disasters

By 2025, water scarcity is expected to become a severe issue, affecting 1.8 billion people globally and significantly impacting agriculture. This situation has profound geopolitical implications, as identified by US intelligence, especially in countries critical to global industries, such as India, a major player in the IT services sector. The interconnectedness of global supply chains means that climate impacts in one region can have cascading effects worldwide.

The Year of Sustainability Strategy
The year 2024 marks a pivotal moment for sustainability strategy, measurement, and action. Organizations of all sizes and sectors are recognizing that a robust sustainability strategy is as crucial as their core business strategy.

Data is central to this transition. It’s the key to driving low-carbon innovation and validating sustainability efforts. However, there’s a growing skepticism among investors regarding the authenticity of ESG(Environmental, Social and Governance) disclosures, with a majority doubting companies’ ability to meet their ESG commitments. This skepticism underscores the need for transparent, verifiable actions towards sustainability goals.

Circular Economy and Green Innovations
Circular development is gaining momentum, with an increasing focus on green products and sustainable practices. In 2023, the fashion industry continues to experience a shift in consumer preferences, with a strong emphasis on sustainability and ethical practices. Trends like plant-based leathers and the growing popularity of secondhand stores and thrift shopping reflect this shift. Additionally, younger consumers, especially Gen Z and millennials, are showing a preference for affordable, sustainable fashion options, often found in thrift and secondhand outlets. In 2023, the global electric vehicle (EV) market witnessed significant growth, with EVs accounting for approximately 18% of global vehicle sales. This trend reflects a global shift towards more sustainable transportation solutions and highlights the growing dominance of EVs in the automotive market

Net-Zero and Climate Positivity
Some companies and nations are moving beyond net-zero targets towards climate-positive actions. This transition is driven not only by environmental considerations but also by stakeholder influence and financial imperatives. Investors and financial lenders are increasingly demanding a focus on ESG as a long-term strategy for profitability and risk management. L’Oréal has reduced CO2 emissions significantly and is moving towards using 100% renewable energy across all sites by 2025. Microsoft has been carbon neutral since 2012 and is aiming to be carbon negative by 2030. These examples reflect a broader trend of businesses integrating sustainability into their core operations, driven by environmental concerns, stakeholder influence, and financial imperatives​

Concurrently, regulatory frameworks are becoming more stringent, further incentivizing businesses to adopt sustainable practices. The European Union’s Corporate Sustainability Reporting Directive (CSRD), effective since January 5, 2023, is currently being explored and implemented by more than 50.000 companies in EU, aligning with other regulations like the Sustainable Finance Disclosure Regulation (SFDR) and the EU Taxonomy to promote cohesive and effective sustainable corporate governance.

As we move through 2024, the emphasis on sustainability, ESG initiatives, and the adoption of circular economic models are not just environmental imperatives but key components of business resilience and long-term success.

Find continuously updated insights on the topic of Environment, Climate and Resource Challenges from our Intelligence Map, Briefing, and Curated Podcast List here

>> Environment, Climate, and Resource Challenges

 Trend 3: Talent, Social & Changing Work

In 2024, the Talent, Social & Changing Work landscape, the changes are driven by technological advancements, shifting societal values, and the dynamic needs of the workforce. There is a the critical need for diversity, inclusivity, and equity in our approach to talent and work culture, emphasizing the importance of preparing and embracing a workforce that mirrors our diverse global society.

We desperately need to shift our workforce to reflect the diverse world we live in, including in the rapidly growing tech sector.” –Reshma Saujani, Founder of Girls Who Code

Remote and Hybrid Work Models
The pandemic has irrevocably altered our approach to work, with remote and hybrid models becoming the new norm. Organizations are adapting to these models to maintain productivity and employee well-being. This shift requires rethinking workplace culture, communication strategies, and work-life balance. Companies are finding that flexibility in work arrangements can lead to increased employee satisfaction and retention.

Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI)
DEI (diversity, equite and inclusion) has moved from a peripheral HR topic to a central business strategy. The emphasis is on creating an inclusive culture where diverse perspectives are valued and leveraged for better decision-making and innovation. This trend is not only about fairness and ethics but also about enhancing business performance and resilience.

Talent Trends for 2024

  • Reinvention: Both individuals and organizations are embracing digital opportunities for reinvention. Learning agility is becoming more valued than traditional career paths.
  • Scarcity: The mismatch between the available talent pool and the skills needed, particularly in digital domains, is growing. This scarcity is driving significant changes in the workforce, including the phenomenon of the ‘Great Resignation’.
  • Vitality: Employee well-being is taking center stage, with companies recognizing the importance of mental health and work-life balance.
  • Sustainability: There’s an increasing focus on sustainable practices within organizations, aligning with broader environmental and social governance goals.
  • Individuality: Personalization in employee experiences is becoming key, from onboarding to development and performance management.
  • Inclusivity: Harnessing the collective power of diverse teams is gaining emphasis.
  • Accountability: Trust is emerging as a crucial component in employee-employer relationships.

Skills for the Future
Critical thinking, effective communication, and the ability to explore diverse perspectives are becoming essential skills. Additionally, digital fluency and the understanding of software and digital systems are necessary for navigating the modern work environment.

Social Responsibility and Welfare Systems
Organizations are facing increasing demands for social responsibility and transparency, encompassing human rights, health and safety, diversity, and overall human responsibility. The welfare systems are under strain due to ongoing global challenges, necessitating a rethink of the social contract between employees, employers, and governments.

Organizational Reinvention
2024 is witnessing a transformation in organizational structures with the rise of platform businesses, industry mashups, and more fluid, project-based work arrangements. Personalization in production and delivery, increased human augmentation, and changes in work locations are part of this reinvention.

As we navigate through 2024, the focus is shifting from traditional job roles to capabilities, emphasizing enterprise leadership across various organizational levels. Emphasizing learning agility, retraining, and effective onboarding strategies will be crucial in adapting to these changes in the talent, social, and work landscape.

Continuously learn about the topic of Talent, Social, and Changing Work from our Intelligence Maps, Briefings, and Curated Podcast List:

>> Talent, Social and Changing Work

Trend 4: Business Model, Ecosystem and Globalisation Shift

In 2024, as we delve into the complexities of Business Model, Ecosystem, and Globalization Shift, strategic business considerations are increasingly focusing on adaptability and innovation. There is an importance of not just adapting to change but strategically managing it to foster growth and sustainability in an ever-evolving global business environment.

The only constant in business is change. The challenge of leadership is to manage that change to achieve growth.”  – Indra Nooyi, former CEO of PepsiCo

Global Economic Fluctuations
The global economic landscape is marked by fluctuations and geopolitical tensions. Monetary Fund (IMF) projects a rate of 3.1%, marking a slight improvement from the 2.9% growth anticipated for 2023. This projection, as outlined in the IMF’s World Economic Outlook, indicates a gradual yet modest recovery from the slower growth rates experienced in recent years. The increase for 2024 reflects a stabilizing global economy, despite the ongoing challenges of inflation and geopolitical tensions. However, it’s important to note that these growth rates still fall below the historical average, suggesting a cautious optimism in the global economic outlook​

Businesses are adapting to these changes, factoring in trade restrictions, strained supply chains, and economic uncertainties that are reshaping global operations.

Consumer Behavior Changes
In the digital era, consumer behavior is rapidly evolving, with a growing demand for personalized and seamless experiences. The advent of generative AI is further revolutionizing this landscape, providing new tools for companies to understand and engage with their customers. Businesses are leveraging generative AI to enhance data analytics and customer insights, allowing them to create more tailored and responsive offerings. This shift underscores the need for companies to continuously adapt their engagement strategies to meet the dynamic expectations of a globally connected, AI-influenced consumer market.

Innovation in Business Models
The paradigm shift in business models is moving from a focus on firm-centric value to value creation within broader business ecosystems. This transition involves reimagining how companies create and capture value in a digital, interconnected world. The concept of platform companies is gaining prominence, but there are various roles organizations can play in these ecosystems.

Adapting to a New Economy
As the global economy navigates through uncertainties, businesses are grappling with a mix of scarcity and abundance. Challenges like raw material scarcity, strained energy systems, and workforce shortages are juxtaposed with technological advancements and digital opportunities. Companies are strategically planning to engage more in business ecosystems, with predictions that sharing data and operations through joint ventures could increase profitability.

Ecosystem Collaboration and Technology
Open innovation and ecosystem partnerships are becoming crucial for integrated customer experiences. Cloud-based business models are facilitating faster transformation, allowing companies to be more agile and flexible. Leaders are moving towards more modular business structures, focusing on operational agility to navigate the complex global landscape.

A Fairer and More Equitable World
Amid these shifts, there’s an increasing call for equity and fairness in the global economy. Companies are being challenged to find common ground in creating business models that are not only profitable but also equitable and sustainable.

As we move through 2024, understanding and adapting to these trends in business models, ecosystems, and globalization is vital for companies aiming to stay competitive and resilient in a rapidly changing global market.

Find more insights on the topic of Business Model, Ecosystem, Globalization Shift from our Intelligence Map, Briefings, and Curated Podcast Lists:

>> Business Model, Ecosystem, Globalization Shift

Trend 5. Trust, Security, and Regulation 

In 2024, the dynamics of Trust, Security, and Regulation continue to shape the corporate world, with an the increasing interconnectedness of corporate actions, trust, security, and broader societal impacts.

The business of business is improving the state of the world.”  – Marc Benioff

Regulatory Compliance and Governance Changes
Organizations are facing a rapidly evolving regulatory landscape, particularly in areas such as privacy, data protection, and financial oversight. Staying ahead of these changes is crucial for maintaining corporate integrity and public trust. As regulations become more complex, businesses need adaptive and proactive governance strategies.

Healthcare Evolution
In the healthcare sector, keeping abreast of developments and regulatory changes is essential for safeguarding patient trust and security. This industry faces unique challenges, given the sensitive nature of health data and the rapid advancements in medical technology and healthcare delivery methods.

Building Trust in Business
In today’s business environment, trust is more than a compliance issue; it’s a foundational element of corporate identity. Companies are increasingly focused on clear communication, protecting customer and employee data, maintaining strong ethical standards, and ensuring consistent customer experiences. In response to societal challenges, brands that actively engage in these areas are seeing increased consumer loyalty and trust.

The Role of CEOs in Societal Change
There’s a growing expectation for CEOs to proactively address societal challenges. Many people now believe business leaders should initiate change rather than waiting for governmental intervention. This trend is leading to new roles within companies, such as trust officers, who integrate responsibilities around ethics, AI, and security.

Digital Trust and Cybersecurity
Digital trust is becoming a cornerstone of business operations. The rise in ransomware attacks, with a notable increase in data exfiltration incidents, highlights the urgency of robust cybersecurity measures. The concept of zero trust, which operates on the principle of “never trust, always verify,” is gaining traction. Businesses are allocating more resources to cybersecurity, aligning it with broader business goals.

Key Policy and Regulation Areas
Looking forward, key areas of policy and regulation will include sustainability, digital governance, financial regulations, and addressing unfair competition. Specific focus areas will be ESG (Environment, Social, and Governance) criteria, privacy laws, ethics, cyber governance, and regulations surrounding emerging assets like cryptocurrencies.

As we progress through 2024, the importance of trust, security, and regulatory compliance cannot be overstated. Businesses must adapt to these evolving demands to maintain customer trust, ensure security, and comply with an increasingly complex regulatory environment.

Get more insights on the topic of Trust, Security, and Regulation from our Intelligence map, Briefing, and Curated Podcast List:

>> Trust, Security, and Regulation


Navigating the Business Landscape: Future Directions 

Now, more than ever, we need to look towards the purpose of ourselves and our companies‘ purpose, chart our path both professionally and for our business, and create our best future.

Understanding and achieving this goal may be challenging, but it’s essential to determine a direction and embark on this journey for both organizations and individual leaders.

In a rapidly evolving business environment, staying ahead means constantly rethinking the way we operate. It’s about embracing change not just as a necessity but as an opportunity for growth and innovation.” – Rosalind Brewer, CEO of Walgreens Boots Alliance

Responsible Leadership for a Game-Changing plan means as a Business or Organisation to

  • Monitor strategic trends and signals.
  • Understand your current position and the need for change.
  • Define your viable purpose to achieve a better future.
  • Outline scenarios for potential futures and prioritize.
  • Create the best value creation opportunities based on scenarios and the capabilities possible to build on.
  • Define ambitious goals.
  • Identify low-hanging fruits and business areas no longer core to the business.
  • Identify needed innovation themes to explore.
  • Focus on the long term and balance the short term.
  • Engage employees, partners in ecosystems, and customers in the journey.
  • Keep improving, experimenting, and adjusting to learn the best way forward quickly.

“Which new capabilities are necessary to unlock the dream and where do you need the biggest change in order to win in the future? – Jim Hagemann Snabe

To inspire you for needed changes, find more insights on the topic of Business Strategy and Transformation from our Intelligence Map, Briefings, and Curated Podcast Lists:

>> Business Strategy and Transformation 

Those who lead by example and demonstrate passion for what they do make it much easier for their followers to do the same.” -Marshall Goldsmith

Responsible Leadership for a Game-Changing plan means as an Individualyou need to work through

  • to find the signals of future impacting trends,
  • building on your strengths and capabilities,
  • finding the worthy purpose and main areas where you like to have your mission to add value
  • clarify your ambition in those areas for both and short and long term,
  • define your value proposition as a leader or board member
  • develop your coaching ability to ask empowering questions and foster self-generated insights and goal-clarity
  • find the resources or partners to co-develop and/ or support you on the journey, and
  • find ways to experiment and find inspiration and energy to stay the course.

Only when we are brave enough to explore the darkness will we discover the infinite power of our own light.” — Brené Brown

To inspire you for developing your leadership, find more insights on the topic of Exploring Leadership from our Intelligence Maps, Briefings, and Curated Podcast Lists:

>> Exploring Leadership

The very best thing you can do for the whole world is to make the most of yourself” – Wallace Wattles


Curiosity is the engine of achievement” Ken Robinson

And as a summary, for those of you that want to reflect on the overall and integrated level of trends and leadership insights, we have created Digoshen Recommends.

Digoshen Recommends  inspires you on business, sustainability, digital and human perspectives and is shared as a continuously updated Intelligence Map, Briefing, and a Curated Podcast Lists:

>> Digoshen Recommends

There is an overriding principle that one of my ancestors voiced: Change is really the only tradition worth preserving.– Jacob Wallenberg

Now more than ever, it is time for purposeful and ambitious actions. We wish you a peaceful, sustainable, and prosperous 2024!

Sources: Thanks to insights shared for the major trends by WEF, IFTF, MIT Sloan, INSEAD, IMD, Stanford, Harvard, Salzburg Forum,Institute of Coaching and Digoshen Research 

(This blogpost also builds on earlier blogposts from the last years, including “Rethink the path to a sustainable future for businesses and leaders”,  “Reimagine business and rethink leadership for a sustainable future” ”Direction for 2021 requires innovation in sustainability and learning to live with uncertainty” and  “Trends for a Game-Changing Plan”) 


This blogpost is originally shared at the blog of of Digoshen, and the blog of the Digoshen founder

At Digoshen we work hard to increase #futureinsights and help remove #digitalblindspots and #sustainabilityblindspots. We believe that Companies, Boards and Business Leadership Teams need to understand more of the future and the digital & sustainable world to fully leverage the potential when bringing their business into the digital & more sustainable age. If you are a board member, consider joining our international board network and master programs.

To understand where you and your company stand in relation to digital business and leadership progress, take our survey at and get a free of charge personalized report with recommendations on how to move forward. The survey is anonymous and takes about 15 minutes to complete.

You will find more insights via Digoshen Website and you are welcome to follow us on LinkedIn Digoshen @ Linkedin and on twitter: @digoshen  and founder @liseeng