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Growing Pains

Growing Pains: 2018 Global CEO Outlook

Growing Pains

Exploring a broad range of business drivers, risks and pain points, this year’s Global CEO Outlook offers insights into how new and evolving forces are continuing to raise the bar for CEOs in all countries and across all sectors.

What’s new this year is that we can zoom in on the Belgian perspective and give you a more detailed insight into the local challenges our Belgian CEOs are facing.

In 2017, we found CEOs are excited about the future: they saw technology driven change as a significant opportunity to disrupt their sector. That optimism continues in 2018, with business leaders showing great faith in the economic environment. This trend is also evident amongst Belgian CEOs who are generally optimistic about the growth of their own company and the economic growth in Belgium. However, that optimism is tempered by caution and realism, with a clear recognition that in order to grow their  businesses, they need to respond to an ever-expanding spectrum of complex challenges and ‘growing pains.’ The survey reveals that the four biggest challenges for Belgian CEOs are operational risks, cybersecurity, technological disruption and geopolitical  changes; with each of these challenges bringing along new responsibilities for CEOs.

Duncan Tait

Reviewing the results and the insights from these senior executives, you can’t help but be struck by the sheer volume and depth of the issues CEOs are facing and how they are personally focusing their efforts as leaders to tackle them. 

It’s not surprising in the current environment to see geopolitical  issues rising up the CEO radar. Although, in Belgium we see that this is less of a concern for CEOs, compared to their global counterparts. Technology continues to command considerable attention – as an enabler, a disruptor and, with the threat of cyber attacks, a very significant risk. Data privacy is also understandably high on the CEO agenda. And even with the increased reliance on data driven models and analytics to make decisions, a majority of CEOs are still relying on the value of their experience and intuition to make the difficult  strategic calls for the future of their organizations.

Miles Roberts

Our thanks go to all the CEOs who gave their time and spoke so candidly about the issues they face in their roles. Being a CEO in this period of such profound disruption and opportunity poses immense personal and professional challenges for each and every CEO. The CEOs I speak with are more open to new thinking, learning new skills and challenging convention than ever before.

If you would like to talk to our professionals about the perspectives and issues raised here, we would welcome the opportunity to discuss how your business can gain from these insights. We look forward to welcoming you in our brand new offices in Brussels, Antwerp and Hasselt or one of our other regional offices.

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