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Leading into a future fraught with change and challenges

I recently heard a futurist talk about nine trends for the future.  The first four trends he discussed were challenging, the last five trends offered optimism.

1. Consumers in the US lack confidence. They are “bullish-but-squeamish.”
2. Baby boomers are aging and anxious.  The “young-old” are doing well, but the “old-old” are struggling.
3. Climate change is happening. Weather will impact markets and travel more and more.
4. Water scarcity is impacting millions and will grow. Water is the new oil, and the ripple effect of this scarcity will change everything.
5. The US is moving toward energy independence.  In the next 20 years, we will be free of the need for foreign oil.
6. There is a growing international middle class driving demand.  This creates a growing demand for US goods and services.
7. The power of the Internet, particularly mobile access to the Internet, is changing buying behaviors.
8. Big data is providing key insights never before available.  We, and those who market to us, know more than ever about consumer habits.
9. Disruptive technologies will continue to reshape markets.  We don’t even know what is coming, but we know it is coming soon.

As leaders, how will these trends impact our leadership? “I reserve the right to be smarter tomorrow” is going to become the daily mantra of all good leaders.