Five Trends for 2005

From Troy Worman:

"Five Trends That Will Define 2005

1. High prices on raw materials. Small companies will cope by building alliances and leveraging associations for buying power.

2. Logistical problems resulting in long lead times. JIT is under attack and it will get worse before it gets better.

3. Benefits driving up labor costs. The sandwich generation, supporting both their children and parents, are beginning to demand 'a slew of new benefits such as flextime and child and elder care programs.'

4. Struggling state economies. 'Hotbeds of entrepreneurship,' California and Florida woes will have a negative impact on the national economy.

5. The return of early-stage deals. Venture capitalists 'have been out raising money and they need to put that capital to work,' but don't expect any batteries.com or petsmart.com deals."