This last week the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland was held.
Early in the week the results were released of a survey conducted by PricewaterhouseCoopers which questioned over 1400 CEO’s in over 80 countries on their top concerns and issues.
It is the 19th Annual Survey of the top issues and concerns of CEO’s therefore comparisons may be drawn from year to year on their responses. It would be great to see a follow up to this survey each year, say six months later, which revealed, ‘okay this is what you said you were concerned about as a group, now what did you do about it?’
For Example: here is a list of the CEO’s Top Concerns
Top CEO Concerns
- Too Much Regulation
- Uncertain Geopolitical Environment
- Volatility in Monetary Exchange Rates
- Lack of Key-Skills in Employee Pool
- Debt Burden and Fiscal Deficit Responses by Government
- Tax Burden Increasing
- Generally Unstable Social Environment
- Consumer Spending and Consumer Behavior changes
- The General Lack of Trust in Businesses
- The Impact of Climate Change and Environmental Damage
By all counts an excellent list.
Now the question: As The CEO When Do You Take Action?
It does not take long to go through this list and place a line through the items which a CEO is not directly able to control. Let’s define what is meant by not able to directly control by addressing the top item – Too Much Regulation. Some CEO’s might say, “Well if I make contributions and lean on people in government I can influence this item.” Although this thinking and the implied action probably does take place, there is no rock solid direct action by the CEO which will provide the desired outcome.
There are too many moving parts in government.
In the case of the fourth item on this list – Lack of Key-Skills in Employee Pool. The CEO may directly influence the desired outcome by creating training programs or by working with Universities to offer the type of courses which would create a steady pipeline of potential employees with the exact skill sets required. This is an action which will directly influence the outcome.
The question then remains open: As The CEO When Do You Take Action?
Consider some of the issues which the general public are concerned about. One of these on the list is the lack of trust in businesses. Another item the general public is concerned about is there is a general distrust with government. What if a CEO stopped paying to influence government and instead worked to take action on the specific items they are able to directly control and influence to the outcome desired?
Take a hard look at the items you are concerned about. Remove the items from your list which you are not able to directly influence toward the desired outcome. Instead fully focus on the items you are able to directly influence to the desired outcome and take action on these.
Mitch Tublin is the CEO and Founder of a boutique consulting firm with a focus on business strategy and leadership development for top level executives. http://www.linkedin.com/in/mitchtublin