CEOs View Social Media As a Strategic Tool

Ninety-five percent of the world’s top performing organisations identified getting closer to customers as their most important strategic initiative over the next five years – using Web, interactive, and social media channels to rethink how they engage with customers and citizens, according to an IBM survey of more than 1,500 chief executive officers from 60 countries and 33 industries worldwide.
 
Over the last four studies, the expected impact of technology on organisations has risen from sixth to second place in importance, revealing that CEOs understand that technology and the interconnection of the world's infrastructures is contributing to the complexity they face, and also reveals that they need more technology-based answers to succeed in a world that is massively interconnected.
 
The CEOs view the historic explosion of information and global information flows as opportunities, rather than threats.
 
The study also finds that less than half of global CEOs believe their enterprises are adequately prepared to handle a highly volatile, increasingly complex business environment. CEOs are confronted with massive shifts – new government regulations, changes in global economic power centers, accelerated industry transformation, growing volumes of data, rapidly evolving customer preferences – that, according to the study, can be overcome by instilling “creativity” throughout an organization. 
 
More than 60% of global CEOs believe industry transformation is the top factor contributing to uncertainty, and the finding indicates a need to discover innovative ways of managing an organisation’s structure, finances, people and strategy.
 
Creativity, People Skills Top Priority of ASEAN CEOs
 
The overall findings for ASEAN are similar to the global findings, with a vast majority of CEOs anticipating even greater complexity in the future. ASEAN CEOs also believe that creativity is the most important leadership quality they intend to focus on in the future.
 
In ASEAN, while the CEOs agreed on industry transformation and information explosion as being the top two factors impacting their organisation over the next five years, they differed in their choice of the third contributing factor. ASEAN CEOs ranked talent shortage higher than Global CEOs. Talent shortage ranks higher in the growth markets of ASEAN, India and Brazil, as they continue to experience rapid development, thus resulting in competition for scarce and skilled resources.
 
Global and ASEAN CEOs are looking to get closer to their customers as part of their focus to realise their strategy in the new economic environment. They intend to understand customer needs better by leveraging insight and intelligence. ASEAN CEOs placed a higher importance on understanding customer expectations in the area of new products, services and channels. ASEAN CEOs identified people skills as their top dimension to focus on over the next five years.
 
Both Global and ASEAN CEOs agreed on the need to foster creativity in their organization, especially using this creativity in their dealings with customers, partners and employees.
 
This was named as the most important quality in this segment. ASEAN CEOs placed more emphasis on sustainability as compared to Global CEOs, making it the second most important leadership quality for CEOs in this region. This is explained as a concern for the environment and social issues.
 
ASEAN CEOs are keen to utilise resources optimally, thus promoting a more sustainable environment.Both Global and ASEAN CEOs also ranked integrity as a key leadership quality.

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