Inside Darley December 2021

Hi, I’m Paul Darley, and thanks for tuning into our December issue of Inside Darley. At this time of year, we just want to take a moment to thank you, our great customers, for the opportunity to serve you over the past 12 months. And also to thank our great Team Darley members for their recent vote of confidence when, based on their survey results, we were recently named by the Chicago Tribune as one of the Top 100 Places to Work in Chicago.

We’ve been really mindful of our own culture as a business. And I heard a speaker just recently say, “Your culture is best defined by how your employees talk about your business or your organization at the dinner table.” So it’s something that we’re really mindful of.

We also know that this time of year you’re probably working on your 2022 business plan, or maybe adjusting your long term strategic plan. And whenever we do that, we always start off by looking at megatrends. And we’ve got three great articles for you that are attached here.

The first is called The Demographic Drought, and it talks really about what they call the “Sansdemic,” which is this approaching Sansdemic that will really transform the labor market with what they call a vanishing workplace, as they look at the work age population from 15 to 64. But some very interesting things here.

The second attachment is all on megatrends. This was just put out by Ernst & Young at a conference I attended. It talks about 10 major megatrends that are taking place. It begins on page 15 of this document. But they talk about decarbonization, and our company’s working on some new products to address that with electrification and other things that we’ll be introducing next year.

But they also talk about a Technomic Cold War. They talk about what’s happening with global and cyber throughout the world. Next, they talk about a behavioral economy. They call data the new oil, which is interesting. Next, they talk about synthetic media, and can you trust all the information out there? I think we all know that there’s a lot of suspect stuff. And lastly, they talk about this work and life unbound. So, some interesting things there.

I think my favorite speaker at this entire conference was a futurist by the name Pascal Finette. And Pascal talks about how change really happens very gradually, and then suddenly. And he said, “As you look at these megatrends, you have to look at the implication of the implications, and that’s really where you’ll find your business opportunities.”

And so, interestingly enough, there was one group who studied autonomous vehicles. My group kind of broke down the impact of electric firefighting vehicles. And on the autonomous vehicle group, some person said, “Well, it’s going to reduce car accidents by 80%. Someone said, “This is terrible.” They happened to work for a company that did organ donations, and 80% of their organs came from car accidents. If you wanted to learn more about him, I would encourage you to go to their website at beradicalgroup.com. Some interesting stuff there.

Lastly, for those of you who are in the fire service, the AFG grants, that’s the Assistance to Firefighter Grant program opened up on November 8th, and that’s going to close on Friday, December 17th. So you better get those applications in. The amount of funding available is up $90 million this year, to $414 million. That includes $90 million from the American Rescue Plan funding. And Jerry Brant, a great friend of Darley, wrote an article on Lexipol that we’ve given you a link to as well.

So, hey, thanks for the opportunity to serve you this past year. And thanks for tuning into this issue of Inside Darley. If there’s anything we could be doing to support you, we hope you’ll reach out to us.

What does the American Rescue Plan Mean for Fire Departments by Jerry Brant