In essence, the report provides outstanding insight and value in tracking movement across prime metrics. As some published industry lists and rankings provide a “snapshot” of year-end community accomplishments, this report can best be described as a “video” of change over the last three years.
Some of the dynamics that can be observed in the results include the growth of high-tech regions such as Northern California, Austin, and Denver, which are clearly established “industry clusters” enjoying natural expansion primarily in that industry sector. The South and Southwest regions seem to be changing as a result of corporate migration (in the past two decades, the number of Fortune 400 companies based in Texas grew to 50 from 15) and the preferences of the millennial generation. According to the Brookings Institute, “Millennials overwhelmingly prefer western cities such as Houston and Denver.” As a result, the New York City region lost 20,369 millennials from 2010 to 2012.
Any location consultant worth their salt wants to be the first to identify an up-and-coming community not yet identified by peers and corporate clients. The Leading Locations report, and the methodology used to track the changes occurring in regions, is extremely critical to identify these underpursued communities that typically would not be considered due to past impressions.