1. Experiences that generate a positive impact
For the past couple of years now, customers (and employees) have been more and more looking for experiences that generate a positive impact.
More brands are linking into a social mission and making these intentions clear to customers.
Customers want brands to stand for something, whether that be action around climate change, poverty, societal advances or through charitable contributions.
Brands have realised that customers no longer care about just price, but about the bigger picture.
Customers want their purchases to make a difference.
“I believe that in 2022 we will see even more drive from customers to be aligning themselves with brands, products and services that make a difference in the world.
2. Customers are willing to walk
Customers are willing to walk if they receive a bad service or experience.
This is not a new trend, but one that we will see develop momentum.
Previous trends were all centred around price comparison and value for money, but as society gets busier, customers are looking for products and services that offer exactly what they need.
The customer experience is a huge part of that, and customers are way more likely to walk away from companies who are not delivering on that.
Customers have had enough and know that they have choice and are willing to walk.
It is also easier than ever to switch to another provider, so the power is well and truly in the hands of consumer.
Moving into 2022, we will see this trend continuing, with companies continue to understand what their customer really wants and increasing their focus on the customer experience.
3. Surviving the talent shortage
2021 saw the great resignation, as people sought more of a work life balance.
The Pandemic has taught us that life is short and there is so much more to life than work. The great resignation has seen many people take lower paid roles as a trade-off for more time with their families.
And I predict that just as we have seen with consumer choice as I discussed above, we will see an upward trend of people making employment choices that better benefit their lives holistically.
I believe that companies who place balance, flexibility and employee wellbeing at the heart of their employee experience, will attract the best talent.
Another trend that will grow rapid momentum in 2022 is people seeking employment in companies that are making a difference in the world.
People want to go to work and do something that contributes to society. Ultimately, they want more than just a ‘job’.
I know that these are the key reasons that my team (and I!) love working here at terptree. The fact that there is no expectation on to work more than their working hours, the flexibility to attend family and school occasions as well as personal appointments and working for a business with a tangible social mission.
I think that we will see the great resignation continue into 2022, with people continuing to want more from employment, in exactly the same way that we have seen with customers seeking out more positive experiences and being willing to walk away.
In addition to this, I know that companies who source diverse talent will be creating the workforce that is needed over the next 5+ years.
Customers want to do business with companies who understands them, and therefore having a diverse workforce that reflects the diversity of the customer base will be key in 2022.
We have already seen this happening with companies we are working with, specifically looking to hire deaf people into roles.
And also going one step further and ensuring that before they do this – they create an inclusive employee experience from the outset.
4. The human experience
This prediction summarises nicely the previous points.
Yes, customer and employee experience will be even more important in 2022, but we are really seeking a human experience.
This global pandemic has transformed the human race.
It has made us feel more and connect more with our humanity.
Seeing and helping others who are more vulnerable than ourselves and experiencing suffering on a global scale, has brought home that we are all the same, no matter how different we all are as individuals.
The human experience is all around recognising individual’s uniqueness and enabling each human to thrive.
I believe that this is year where diversity shines, as companies start to look at the human, rather than the ‘staff’ or consumers.
There are so many initiatives this year that will bring diversity to the forefront, the Valuable 500 being one of them.
The Valuable 500 is global business collective made up of 500 CEOs and their companies, innovating together for disability inclusion.
So, a big one for 2022, companies have a real opportunity to lean into initiatives like the Valuable 500 and consider disability as a priority.
5. Representation for the deaf community and settling for no less that equality
2022 is the year for true representation for the deaf community.
Our last blog of 2021 centred around Rose Ayling-Ellis being the first deaf contestant on Strictly Come Dancing and the first to win it too.
This is a momentous time for the deaf community. Representation on a mainstream, peak time TV show, showcasing talented deaf people.
On 28th January, Parliament debate the British Sign Language (BSL) Bill brought forward by Rosie Cooper, MP, in the next step for deaf people being given more access in their first language, BSL.
With the spike of interest in learning BSL, the opportunity to shortly learn BSL as a GCSE, legal cases being fought and won by deaf people for access, we will see this snowball in 2022.
It will not only be about representation though, as the deaf community will no longer settle for anything less than equality.
For many years, deaf people have put up with inequality and lack of opportunity.
But 2021, has shown how talented and resilient deaf people are and what a great foundation to push forward and make real change.
I couldn’t have put it better than Liam O’Dell in his recent article on the most popular deaf blog, Limping Chicken “If 2021 was the year we asserted our rights, 2022 is the year we strengthen them.”
To read more about deaf people achievements in 2021 – take a look at #Deaf2021, an initiative by Deaf Activist, Alison Bryant, to showcase the talent that lies within the deaf community.
This is a massive step change and deaf people will no longer be settling for less than equality.
This will have a huge impact on deaf employees and deaf customers’ expectations, so in 2022 companies will need to step up and ensure that they are creating accessible and inclusive experiences.
As part of our series introducing you to the members of our team, we are today sitting down for a chat with Caroline our longest