NUMBER 5 TREND :MSMEs ARE ABOUT DOING BUSINESS IN A HUMANE WAY
INSIGHT: MSMEs hold a special place in people’s hearts because they are as human as we are. Industrialization, robots, and artificial intelligence are the fad now and will continue to stay and grow. Yet, the heart will always yearn for a human touch.
ICSB RECOMMENDATION: Technology is a tool to improve your operations; the human element is what makes MSMEs unique and long-lasting. Treat your employees with dignity and respect and engage your customers with the warmth of a human smile. Humane entrepreneurship is all encompassing.

NUMBER 4 TREND :PERSONALIZATION IS THE NEW HOT TOPIC FOR MSMEs
INSIGHT: MSMEs can no longer compete on price or convenience of location as big businesses have discovered how to deliver their products to their clients on the same day and at a lower price. Given their size, big businesses have developed one-size fits all for many products for mass consumption. MSMEs cannot compete at this level.
ICSB RECOMMENDATION: MSMEs should brainstorm and develop products and services that are personalized for their costumer needs and preferences. The benefits of new technologies like 3D printing and being close to the consumer will allow MSMEs to offer them a new and more attractive option.

NUMBER 3 TREND :ATTRACTING A NEW WORKFORCE FOR SMEs
INSIGHT: SMEs should jump on the opportunity to hire millennials by offering them the stability of a quality job, but with the benefits of innovation, encouraging creativity, and opportunity to grow. As millennials are the workforce of the future, they will be able to offer the best skillset, mindset, and productivity to SMEs. Its HIP to work for an SME!
ICSB RECOMMENDATION: SMEs should identify ways to engage millennials and think about how to offer compelling jobs to attract them. The jobs need to be better than what are offered in the GIG economy and more innovative than the strict corporate environment.

NUMBER 2 TREND :ACCESS TO FINANCE AND NEW OPTIONS AVAILABLE
INSIGHT: MSMEs and entrepreneurs will have more options available than ever before to finance their companies. Many banks will launch new financial products aimed at micro, small, and medium-sized enterprises. Additionally, new mediums such as peer-to-peer lending, crowd funding, invoice-factoring, and corporate finance are expected to increase rapidly. Economists also anticipate that new and much unregulated financing options will appear via crypto-currencies.
ICSB RECOMMENDATION: MSMEs should begin exploring these new financing options, but understand the inherit risks of each.

ICSB NUMBER ONE TREND FOR 2018 :MSMEs PROTECTING THEIR ASSETS
INSIGHT: The value of MSMEs lies in their assets. The assets can range from the customer base and know-how, to location, business service, and reputation. These unique assets need to be protected now more than ever before because more threats are coming that no one has ever experienced.
ICSB RECOMMENDATION: Protect your core assets! Do not think that because you are an MSME you are not a prime candidate for an attack. Also, own and protect your brand.