In PwC’s 2016 CEO Survey, the top CEO concerns, from over-regulation to the impact of trade agreements to tax reform, were all based on the uncertainty of the future. Yet for all of the uncertainty they face, the CEOs who participated in the survey have identified a clear path forward. As I study the path being forged, I encourage you to incorporate these plans into your organization:

Strengthen the technology foundation to set your business apart.

Technology is an essential component of every organization’s future. The challenge is to sift through the rapidly proliferating technologies, to identify what is needed for your organization. For some organizations, custom apps and cloud-based operations will facilitate flexibility; for others, streamlining operations with tools that foster communication and collaboration will be the key. Business leaders must not only embrace technological advancement but must also bring in tech-savvy, innovative, and forward-thinking talent that they can entrust with envisioning a tech-enabled future.

[Tweet “Tech-savvy, innovative, forward-thinking talent is needed to envision a tech-enabled future.”]

Anticipate the needs of future customers and other stakeholders.

One of the biggest challenges facing every organization is a new expectation from consumers and stakeholders of transparency and clear purpose. This is as much about communicating the culture of the organization as it is about developing growth opportunities. To do that, there must be alignment between marketing, sales, and IT; there must be a clear brand identity; and there must be demonstrated examples of the culture from the top leadership.

[Tweet “Clear brand identity and culture will come with alignment between marketing, sales, and IT.”]

Prepare millennials for leadership roles.

Millennials are now the majority in the workplace, and it’s the smart leader who is focused on how to attract, retain, and engage this generation. These talented members of your team will expect to be nurtured and developed, to have purpose and meaning, and to be a part of something special. Preparing this generation for leadership requires a more customized approach to leadership development.

What is the bottom-line for this study? Don’t be afraid to take risks. Bold, innovative leadership will be required to lead your organization through these uncertain times. Take. Action. Now.


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.

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