CEOs Identify Top Concerns in PwC Survey
When PwC publishes their annual CEO Survey, I take note. The results highlight top CEO concerns, which helps my company identify where we can focus our efforts in support of our clients. This year’s survey revealed a wide variety of challenges that CEOs believe they will have to endure throughout this year and into the next. The top concerns were:
- Lack of revenue growth, particularly in the second half of the year
- Over-regulation stunting growth
- The impact of the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP)
- Consumer – and stakeholder – pressure to demonstrate purpose
- Tax reform
There is one common theme among all concerns facing CEOs as we look forward: uncertainty. And that uncertainty is complicated by the volatility of this year’s election cycle, which adds more unpredictability into future planning. Regardless, it is necessary to have the courage and tenacity to lead, innovate, grow, and succeed during uncertainty. Uncertainty combined with such a range of challenges demands a level of sophisticated leadership which keenly focuses on the following areas:
Embracing change. Rather than fight it, good leaders embrace change and seek ways to leverage from it. Start now by ensuring that you have assembled the right talent. You need people who are versatile, flexible, forward-thinking, and willing to embrace change.
If you do not change direction, you may end up where you are heading. – Lao Tzu
Staying focused. Rather than become distracted by every “what if,” good leaders use enthusiasm and confidence to keep their team focused on the mission of the organization. Start now by evaluating your organization’s core mission.
Good business leaders create a vision, articulate the vision, passionately own the vision, and relentlessly drive it to completion. – Jack Welch
Seeking opportunity. Uncertainty does not prevent opportunity. Good leaders see opportunity and build teams of talented people who see past uncertainty, visualizing the opportunity it presents to take the lead, make a change, or capture a new market. Start now by identifying how your customers will respond to uncertainty and what strengths your organization has to solve the problems they will face.
A pessimist sees the difficulty in every opportunity; an optimist sees the opportunity in every difficulty. – Winston S. Churchill
Adapting. Successful people – and successful organizations – adapt. They accept new paradigms and allow for shifts in philosophy, if not beliefs. Adaptability is a competitive advantage, an essential skill in a globally competitive environment. Start now by recognizing rigidities within your organization and work to challenge them.
You can’t build an adaptable organization without adaptable people–and individuals change only when they have to, or when they want to. – Gary Hamel
The challenge of an uncertain future is that no one knows quite how it will all unfold. But leaders who remain flexible and open-minded will be able to guide their organizations through uncharted waters, regardless of the challenges they face.
As the CEO & Founder of East Tenth Group, Michelle leverages 25 years of business and experience as a strategic advisor and executive coach to help drive actionable people solutions and provide practical insights on business strategy to senior leaders. she and her team and are fiercely committed to the development and growth of people and companies because we believe that when people thrive, business thrives.