CxO Insights

Top Priorities to Emerge Stronger from the Corona Pandemic

The Corona crisis is slowing down the global economy and shifts many companies' priorities. In most industries, executive board members are preparing for a longer-term crisis scenario. Even though they do not expect to reach pre-crisis levels before 2022, they prioritize long-term strategic investments on their post-Corona agenda.

On average, companies do not expect a V-curve as a recovery scenario, but rather a U-curve. Top decision-makers tackle this development surprisingly considerate and assign the highest importance to digitalization, cost improvements and structural changes as well as investments in employee engagement and new working models.
Despite the critical Corona situation, digitalization in all areas of the company remains a central strategic cornerstone for the further development of the entire value chain to realize long-term potentials. 7 out of 10 industry clusters put digitalization in first place. The reason behind the focus on cost improvements and structural changes differs depending on pre-crisis economic situation. For industries like Financial Industries, Automotive or Mechanical Engineering Companies, the crisis is partially the trigger, partially the accelerator for business transformations which have already started before. Other industries, such as Transportation, Travel and Logistics experience short-term unexpected impact with long-term effects on their business. Employees receive support for developing new skills, staying connected even through remote work and measures to avoid a “talent drain” like in 2008.

On the other hand, the issue of sustainability is falling behind in the management agenda in the face of the crisis – as well as supply chain adjustments and M&A activities. Supply chains were surprisingly stable during the Corona crisis - lasting changes are mostly due to other causes. This in one example of some widespread perceptions on Corona effects which are rejected based on the study participants’ input.

These are some of the key findings of our CxO study, for which we conducted personal interviews with 212 executive board members of internationally active companies in May and June this year. Our study report provides you with further exciting insights about their priorities beyond Corona, expected economic developments, challenges and industry-specific future trends. 

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