Twenty-five years from now, shopping will look and feel very different—and those leading retail companies will also need to be different than today's leaders.
By 2039, futurists envision a technology-enhanced shopping experience complete with adaptive storefronts and personalized promotions in-store that sense your preferences. That vision offers a glimpse into the confluence of skills that will be needed to lead a retail organization of the future.
As technology increasingly becomes part of the retail experience, not just online but in the physical store, retail leaders will have to adjust their skills.
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"A retail leader has to be nimble to do the e-commerce piece of it, but the retail piece requires so much laborious people development because you have so many facilities and so many customer-facing people, and trying to find both those skill sets in one head and in one body is very, very challenging," said Thomas Stemberg, managing general partner of Highland Consumer Fund and office-supply chain Staples' founder and former CEO.