Unanticipated industry shifts: How IHL Group helps companies navigate the retail landscape’s unforeseen challenges and trends and encourages proactiveness.
Greg Buzek, Founder and President of IHL Group
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Strategizing for the larger scale by leveraging technology becomes vital to business health
Hear more as Greg Buzek, Founder and President of IHL Group—an advisory company specializing in technologies for the retail and hospitality industries, joins Staying Curious to share some insights on trends critical to staying ahead of the competition in a rapidly changing world.
Almost every industry has in recent years been faced with challenges far from expected. These shifts were not only unanticipated but also present on a far larger scale than many ever thought to prepare for. And those who successfully weathered the storm have not always been just those who had the best market predictions, but also those who focused on agility, innovation, and nimble strategies.
When it comes to retail, gone is the utilitarian jeep, and in is the racecar
For many years, retail was seen as a “utilitarian jeep”. Prepared and able to handle almost any challenge, in any industry, from fashion to CPG’s. Over the years though, retail has innovated and evolved to better meet companies’ needs and mitigate disruptions. Retail now is probably more comparable to a racecar instead of a jeep, so expectations for what it can handle have only risen.
Even with these advances though, racecars don’t expect to encounter a bomb, or a dramatic course disruption—much as the retail industry is ready for most, yet not all the challenges they may face.
Demystifying the technology landscape and providing accurate and useful data to influence strategy
IHL Group specializes in advising companies within the retail and hospitality industry but got their start by demystifying complicated analytics and market reports.
Currently, their expertise at the strategic level is one of their unique differentiators. By using clean, accurate and timely data along with longstanding industry expertise and relationships, IHL doesn’t only predict market trends but helps companies prepare to handle changes that no one could have predicted.
Noting unforeseen changes in e-commerce, shipping, logistics and return rates, Mr. Buzek shares compelling examples of how success was not only found by those who anticipated the changes—but by those who were equipped to manage the changes, pivot quickly and update their strategy to remain profitable and competitive.
Strategies such as improving technology acceptance and rapidly deploying innovations, like AI intelligence, are suddenly more critical than before, and market predictions can no longer be the standalone source for strategy decisions. Instead, the future for many companies relies on having systems in place than can facilitate lightning-fast transitions and pivot to meet consumer and industry demands.