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Thursday, October 1, 2020

I Have Seen The Future of the Copier Industry and It's Name is New York City

You know I've been saying it since 2008.

You may also know that I've been called everything from a 'traitor'  to 'firebrand' - nobody was predicting the ultimate demise of the copier back in 2009. Few were writing about copiers, printers, toner, sales, document management, the copier industry, or its culture.

Indeed, the industry survived the early shift from paper to digital and a global financial crisis - how could it not survive for another 20 years.

It doesn't take a genius to figure out that the office of 2019 WILL NEVER COME BACK.

Look to New York City.  

"...walk anywhere and you see local's almost impossible to survive..." 

- IAC's Barry Diller.

Barry Diller runs Vimeo, Expedia, Angie, HomeAdvisor & Match, so he knows a bit about technology.

His observations so far are sound, then he says this - 

"...long term from home is not have to be in an environment with other people to be productive...that is not going to change..."

He added, "...the concept of work from home does not work..."

Okay, then.  

What else would you expect to hear from someone investing $250 million in developing an off-shore park on the Hudson River?  He was scheduled to open it in 2021.  It's going to be difficult to recoup a $250 million investment when nobody works in the city.  

So he's encouraging everybody to the cubes.

Those workers are not coming back.  Companies are not going to pay for office space they do not need.  The age of the office is fading as employees stream to the countryside.

New York City wants to get Broadway back up and running.  But Broadway may follow the masses to the suburbs. Why? Because that's where the audience lives and works.

Museums?  To the countryside.  Great restaurants downtown?  Nope, not anymore. Moving to the 'Burbs.

How do I know this?  I am watching it happen right here in little old Wisconsin. It's in Boston, Philly, LA, and Detroit.

The Millennials, their predecessors, and contemporaries are moving away from their corner offices, cube farms, mid-morning Starbucks runs, thirty-minute smoke breaks, and smart-looking digs.
Remember Detroit?  Back in the '80s, the D was a "9 to 5" town; the Yuppies commuted (a forty-five-minute drive) to work each day.  They ate lunch at fancy restaurants and grabbed a coffee from the corner fu-fu place.

At 5:30, the mad rush out of the city was on - gotta leave before dark.  Sure, people went to nice restaurants downtown for special events, but their car was always at risk of being stolen. 
That was in the '80s - have you seen the crime rate in NYC, Boston, or Portland today?  

It is worse.

Add to this, health. Establishing good safety protocols may take years to form and implement.  When given a choice, few will want to work with a mask on, take the elevator with only 4 people on board, be scanned every day, and run the risk of getting sick. 

Cleaning up the crime is going to take a decade - Batman does not exist(yet).  

By the time these troubles are cleared up, nobody will want to go back and nobody will demand that we sit in the same room.

No more. 

And don't count on those gloves, thermometers, floor stickers, facemasks, and facemask detector sales lasting beyond 2021.  

Oh, and managed services? The shelf-life of the helpdesk and Anti-virus is about 5 years.

The new normal includes empty office buildings and no "pivoted" copier manufacturers.

Get out now. 

Jump to a different bell curve.

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