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2023 to 2024 Executive Focus: Navigating Growth, Technology, and Talent in an Evolving Business Landscape

Let’s take a peek into what’s topping the agenda for CEOs and CFOs this year. Courtesy of Gartner’s latest CEO and Senior Business Executive Survey, Marko Horvat,  VP of Research in Gartner’s finance practice, breaks down the big three for 2023: growth, technology, and talent. Gartner CEO and Senior Business Executive Survey was conducted earlier this year.

Marko Horvat, VP of Research at Gartner’s finance practice, emphasises three core priorities for CEOs and CFOs in 2023: growth, technology, and talent.

1. Growth:

In 2023, the focus is on meeting and exceeding growth expectations. CEOs (45%) and CFOs (62%) prioritize growth, though the emphasis has shifted slightly from the previous year. Horvat highlights the need for balancing growth investments with cost management.

2. Technology:

Both CEOs and CFOs agree on the significance of technology, particularly AI and generative AI. The focus is on how these technologies can transform business activities and drive growth.

3. Talent:

Workforce issues and talent shortages are critical. Strategies for addressing these include upskilling, fostering a sense of belonging, and redesigning job descriptions for finance professionals.

2024 CEO Priorities

The 2024 CEO agenda focuses on broader themes, reflecting the evolving challenges and opportunities in the business landscape.

1. Generative AI (Gen AI):

This technology is seen as a transformative force. CEOs need to identify its potential applications and scale them across their businesses.

2. Digital Transformation and AI:

Successful digital transformations involve organizational changes to maximize the benefits of digitization. This includes a focus on revenue growth and cost reduction.

3. Energy Transition:

The urgency of transitioning to green technologies is highlighted. CEOs are encouraged to invest in new green-technology businesses and innovative solutions.

4. Institutional Capability Building:

Building unique capabilities is essential for standing out in competitive markets. Companies are encouraged to develop their own ‘superpowers’.

5. Middle Management:

Rethinking the role of middle managers is advised. Recognizing their core contribution to the company is crucial.

6. Geopolitics:

CEOs are urged to consider geopolitical risks and build resilience to navigate the uncertain global landscape.

7. Growth Strategies:

The path to growth is varied. CEOs need to adapt strategies like improving sales productivity, leveraging technology, and acquiring strategically.

8. Macroeconomic Trends:

CEOs should use scenario planning to navigate economic uncertainties and capitalize on investment opportunities.

The 2024 priorities suggest a shift from more immediate concerns to long-term strategic planning, with an emphasis on technological innovation, sustainable practices, and organizational strength. CEOs are encouraged to stay agile and responsive to these evolving challenges while maintaining their personal well-being and values.

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