PwC’s 27th Annual Global CEO Survey methodology

PwC surveyed 4,702 CEOs in 105 countries and territories from 2 October through 10 November 2023. The global and regional figures in this report are weighted proportionally to country nominal GDP to ensure that CEOs’ views are representative across all major regions. The industry- and country-level figures are based on unweighted data from the full sample of 4,702 CEOs, including 4,088 men, 521 women, and 93 who identified with another gender or preferred not to say. Further details by region, country and industry are available on request. All quantitative interviews were conducted on a confidential basis. Among the CEOs who participated in the survey:

  • 3% lead organisations with revenues of US$25 billion or more 

  • 4% lead organisations with revenues between US$10 billion and US$25 billion

  • 20% lead organisations with revenues between US$1 billion and US$10 billion

  • 38% lead organisations with revenues between US$100 million and US$1 billion

  • 31% lead organisations with revenues of up to US$100 million 

  • 68% lead organisations that are privately owned.


Not all percentages in charts add up to 100%—a result of rounding percentages; multi-selection answer options; and the decision in certain cases to exclude the display of certain responses, including other, none of the above and don’t know.

We also conducted in-depth interviews with CEOs from North America and Asia-Pacific. Two of these interviews are quoted in this report; the full interviews can be found at

The research was undertaken by PwC Research, our global centre of excellence for primary research and evidence-based consulting services.

About the inefficiency tax

By combining data from this year’s CEO Survey with selected data from other sources, we calculated an overall cost of inefficiency that ranged from US$10 trillion to US$20 trillion. This translates to 7% to 13% of global GDP based on purchasing-power parity. Our assumptions were as follows:

  • The percent of total time considered inefficient was a sum of the estimates for the average time considered inefficient in meetings and administrative work.

    • To derive the estimate for meetings, we multiplied our estimate of the percentage of scheduled meeting time considered inefficient (average: 40%) by an estimate of the average percent of time spent on meetings in a week (15%; based on research suggesting an average of six hours of scheduled meetings per week; Rogelberg, Scott, & Kello, 2007).

    • To derive the estimate for administrative work, we multiplied our estimate of the percentage of administrative time considered inefficient (average: 38%) by an estimate of the average percent of time spent on administrative tasks in a week (12.5 to 38%; based on research suggesting a minimum of five hours and an average of 15 hours of administrative work per week; West Monroe, 2018).

  • Payroll expenses per employee were estimated by dividing the assumed payroll revenue for each company (self-reported revenue times 0.15) by the self-reported number of employees in the company. 

  • Statista estimates the number of total employees globally at 3.39 billion.

About the reinvention index

We asked CEOs about the extent to which various actions had impacted the way their company creates, delivers and captures value over the past five years. These actions included forming new strategic partnerships, implementing novel pricing models, developing novel products or services, making acquisitions, shifting to a regional supply chain, adopting new technologies and developing new technologies in-house. We then combined responses to this question into an index using factor analysis, a statistical method that enables the combination of individual responses into a factor that they all have in common. (Although we also asked CEOs about divestments, we excluded it from our factor analysis because it was the least associated with business model reinvention.) Finally, we calculated a number for each CEO that represents their level of reinvention—in other words, a reinvention index score. Index score values represent standard deviations from the mean; a higher score on the index indicates more reinvention.

Get in touch

For questions about the data, including additional cuts, contact the CEO Survey research and analytics team.

For media inquiries, contact Dan Barabas.

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