The business landscape has always been one of change, with industries rising and falling in response to market shifts and cultural swings. That’s certainly not news. It was true fifty years ago as much as it is today. However, if change has been a constant in the business world, the rate at which change occurs has sped up exponentially. Whatever word you want to use to describe today’s markets—volatile, dynamic, unpredictable—the effects remain the same. To successfully navigate the job market or make investments with any measure of confidence, you need to stay on top of the trends and draw reasonable conclusions about not only what industries matter now but which ones have the staying power to survive the fickle realties of our economic moment. Of course, everyone has their own two cents on this topic, and guess what, so do we! To cash in on those two cents, read below for our list of five emerging industries worth watching.
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There’s no debating it. Concern for our environment is at an all-time high. And so are our demands for sustainable, renewable solutions in the building industries. This means growth across the board, from chemists in lab coats designing futuristic supplies that will reduce our reliance on traditional building materials to architects re-thinking the proper use of space to minimize the impact of growing populations to solar companies producing the next-gen panels that will affordably power our homes. Green is in. The only question is this: will you hop on board and get some of that green in your pocket?
Yup, you read that right. As the sticky greens become legalized and legitimized in states like Washington and Colorado, the opportunities to make some green yourself multiply. Legal marijuana is already a $3 billion dollar a year affair, and as more states inevitably jump on board over the next five or six years, many estimate that number will climb as high as $20 billion. From growing to selling to merchandising (new burbulator, anyone?), there’s plenty of market space left for new players.
Sorry, but no green puns here. (You were getting tired of them anyway, I know.) A casual glance through the newspaper or on TV is enough to make our point. ISIS and its mayhem across the middle-east. Putin flexing his muscles in the Ukraine. China building a military base and landing strip on contested islands in the Pacific. We live in an uncertain world with military tensions just about everywhere. For the foreseeable future, that’s not going to change nor will the high demand for cutting-edge military solutions like drone and robotics technologies.
We’ve likely all read something about this industry by now. From 3D printing pizzas to prosthetic limbs to, in one case, an entire house, the potential seems limitless. While there remains plenty of refining to do, and the best case scenarios are still being explored, there’s no doubt that 3D printing is here to stay and will in the next few years exert its influence across many disparate contexts. In other words, now’s the time to jump on board.
Haven’t you heard? Cigarettes kill, but e-smoking, or vaping as the kids like to call it, offers smokers their nicotine fix without the harmful toxins found in cigarettes. Add to this the absence of secondhand smoke (vaping releases a water-based vapor that disperses within seconds) and you’ve got a compelling product that responds to our cultural moment.In other words, as our culture moves more and more toward health-consciousness and respect for others’ bodies (no one wants to be around secondhand smoke anymore), e-smoking will continue to rise. Vaping also holds allure for the tech set, since these nicotine delivery systems are themselves customizableelectronic gadgets. Look to industry leaders like NJOY.com to witness the incredible growth already taking place in this market.
There you have it. Five emerging industries that offer compelling opportunities for workers on the job market as well as investors looking to branch out into promising new business sectors. Now that you have our two cents, it’s up to you invest what you’ve read and spin it into gold.