20 years inside the mind of the CEO... What’s next?

What’s on the mind of 1,379 CEOs around the world?

20 years inside the mind of the CEO… What’s next?

Over the past 20 years CEOs have witnessed tremendous upheavals as a result of globalisation and technological change. In our 20th CEO Survey, nearly 1,400 CEOs share their views on the impact of these forces on growth, talent, trust and society. In this short video, PwC’s global chairman Bob Moritz, reflects on how today we’re at an inflection point; for leaders it’s now time to both raise and communicate the role of business in society and the positive impact it can have.

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PwC's Global Chairman Bob Moritz introduces our 20th CEO Survey

For the last two decades, PwC has asked business leaders across the globe about the trends reshaping business and society. As we mark the 20th year of our annual CEO survey, we’ve observed just how much the world has changed.


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We’ve asked CEOs for their views on:


Competing in an age of divergence

Globalisation has brought many benefits, but also downsides. With greater convergence has come greater divergence in beliefs, values and systems. CEOs are concerned about uncertain economic growth, over-regulation and skills shortages. Yet CEOs are surprisingly optimistic about growth: 38% are very confident in their company’s 12-month revenue growth prospects.

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Managing man and machine

Many individuals worry that globalisation and technology will eliminate their jobs. In reality, CEOs now recognise the need for talent – 52% plan to increase headcount, but can’t find people with the right skills. And 77% of CEOs are concerned that a shortage of key skills could impair their company’s growth. CEOs know they can’t innovate using technology alone.

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Gaining from connectivity without losing trust

CEOs are paying close attention to how human connection is affected by technology. And as our interactions become ever more automated, data-driven and virtual, the human factor is receding. Fully 69% of CEOs are convinced that it’s harder to gain and retain people’s trust in an increasingly digitalised and connected world.

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Making globalisation work for all

While nearly two thirds of CEOs agree that globalisation has benefited connectivity, trade and capital mobility, 44% say it has not helped at all in closing the gap between rich and poor. This year, the world has been forced to consider how globalisation can work for all. Here businesses have a significant role to play.

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Five key areas for long-term, sustainable success

Business leaders around the world are more confident, both in the global economy and in their companies’ growth prospects; two of the findings from our latest CEO Survey.

And few country’s CEOs are more confident than Australia’s. How justified is this world-leading optimism with the challenges that this year ahead holds?

We’ve considered five key areas companies should consider for long-term, sustainable success; regaining trust before it impacts the bottom line, finding and adding value in the human system, the battleground of customer experience, the missing piece of the cyber and robotics revolution and why avoiding Asia is not sustainable.

Learn more about Australia’s CEOs and their confidence, watchouts and success through our Australian CEO Survey results.

See the Australian key findings

3 of Australia’s CEOs discuss the issues of today and the battlegrounds for the future


Explore the data

In an increasingly digitised world, to what extent do CEO’s agree or disagree with the following statements? 

In an increasingly digitised world, to what extent do CEO’s agree or disagree with the following statements?

Contact us

Scott Gillespie
National Thought Leadership Leader
Tel: +61 2 8266 3229

Kieran McCann
National Thought Leadership Manager
Tel: +61 2 8266 0252

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