Updated: Oct 27
Boston is home to 654,000+ people and is one of the top thriving cities for trade in the United States. However, global affairs have affected the city's economy, plummeting small business revenue by 67% within the first quarter of 2020 alone. But like some other top cities in the US, Boston bounced back strong, with its gross city product reaching $155 billion in 2021.
As the global economy rapidly transforms, Boston is expected to continue experiencing a stronger trade, population, market value, and technology boom. But what do global affairs mean for Boston businesses and markets in the long run?
Understanding the Impact of Global Affairs on Boston Businesses and Markets
In today's world, globalization is shaping every aspect of the world's economy, and Boston isn't left out of these global trends. One international element that impacted Boston entrepreneurs and the market was the COVID-19 pandemic. Before the pandemic, unemployment had drastically reduced to about 3% in Boston and other cities in Massachusetts.
Boston is home to multiple universities and colleges, which is the major reason for the number of highly skilled professionals in Boston’s workforce. About 140,000 students enroll in these schools every year. In 2020, Boston's healthcare and social assistance industry employed the highest numbers of workers, constituting about 18.6% of total jobs.
Unfortunately, the virus spread in these cities caused unemployment to rise by 17.1% in April 2020. There was also a decline in school enrollment, falling by 3.6% from 2019 to 2020 and 3.1% in 2021. All these had direct implications for the Boston economy and local entrepreneurs.
The pandemic is just a glimpse of how much global affairs impact Boston and any other major city in the world. Fast-forward to the post-pandemic era, when Boston entrepreneurs and institutions are adjusting to remote and hybrid learning, innovations, and business strategy. Most importantly, business owners are seeing the need to offer something unique beyond the typical office routines. In the next section, we'll explore how other global events affect businesses in Boston.
Effects of World Events on Boston Local Businesses and Markets
Besides the COVID-19 pandemic that destabilized the global economy, including Massachusetts and Boston entrepreneurs, other significant global affairs and events affecting Boston's local businesses and markets include the Russo-Ukrainian War and the BRICS formation.
Russia’s invasion of Ukraine disrupted global supply chains, creating inflation and scarcity. In fact, it threw the entire world into flux, driving oil and grain prices up. The result has been a higher cost for manufacturing and an increase in the cost of goods and services.
Meanwhile, the rest of the world, including Boston and other United States cities, has struggled to adapt to the price shocks, supply disruptions, and food shortages. Aside from that, the conflict disturbed political affairs in rich and poor countries alike as world leaders scrambled to proffer solutions to growing public anger and hunger.
While we've witnessed the development and gradual stabilization of the Russo-Ukrainian War, we can't say the same about BRICS. BRICS is an acronym for "Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa." The coalition is an economically motivated alliance aimed at dissolving global power from the US and Western countries. We can't tell exactly how this will impact Boston in the coming months and years.
However, what the world knows so far is that BRICS plans to dump the US dollar significantly within the next three years and stop dollar-driven international trade. The plan would be to facilitate future trade in their local currency or any other currency they deem fit.
If this agenda pulls through, Boston businesses and most of the Western world will be greatly affected. So, one way to avoid the looming financial crisis is for Boston businesses to prepare ahead of time and devise means to shield themselves from whatever policies world leaders roll out.
Best Practices for Businesses to Prepare for Changes in Global Affairs
As the world braces for changes in global affairs, here are best practices that will protect you from harsh financial climates and keep you at the top even after huge shifts.
Set Up Systems That Will Protect You From Future Surges and Outbreaks
A new war or health outbreak could begin anytime, and the effect will be felt worldwide within a short while. This means that Boston businesses and markets need protocols to protect their businesses against future fluctuations.
Consider Remote or Hybrid Working
Many businesses continue offering employees the option to work from their homes, especially after realizing that this flexibility benefits them and their employees. Remote work started to make waves during the pandemic, and many workers found it provides a better work-life balance. So, include this culture in your establishments so employees can effectively work from home in case of any change in global affairs.
Foster Adaptability and Effective Leadership
For any business to survive uncertainties like wars and outbreaks, it must be able to adapt to various hostile conditions. This ensures that the team and executives are better prepared for post-event changes. Additionally, for Boston businesses to adjust to global affairs and market changes, the leadership in local businesses should be equipped with both hard and soft skills, some of which are best learned through self-development programs.
Identify Potential Opportunities for Boston-Based Companies as a Result of Global Affairs
It can be difficult for both large and small companies to recover after a pandemic, war, or major global event. However, some businesses have mastered the art of protecting themselves amid this chaos.
For those yet to begin, the EO Boston entrepreneurs network is just what is needed. EO Boston is an organization that fosters peer learning by bringing together professionals, business owners, and entrepreneurs on one platform. Seasoned members of EO Boston use past experiences to mentor and help beginners or people currently facing challenges.
If you're ready to join the EO Boston entrepreneurs network and move your establishment forward, contact us to see if you qualify for an EO Boston membership.