Competition, Global Economy, Talent Issues Challenge Companies

March 17, 2008

This article is included in these additional categories:

Asia-Pacific | Europe & Middle East | Financial Services

Senior executives of the world’s largest organizations identify competition as the top threat to business success (73% say so), followed by?the health of the global economy and acquisition/retention of talent (each cited by 67%),?according to an Accenture?survey.

Additional threats are company reputation (62% noted it as an issue) and the inability to develop new products and services (for 51% of respondents),?the survey found.

Talent Ranks High

Results are similar to a 2005 Accenture survey, but the issue of talent (then cited by 60% as a top issue) has increased in importance – 67% place it as high on the list of threats to company success.

“In today’s multi-polar world – where economic power is distributed among multiple centers of economic and business activity – the war for talent has gone global,” said Mark Foster, Accenture’s group chief executive, Management Consulting & Integrated Markets.

“Additionally, new technologies are transforming the nature of work, the skills demanded, the manner in which work is sourced globally and the ways in which people collaborate.”


As many as one in five (21%) executives say their organizations are not adequately equipped to succeed as global enterprises. More than half are concerned or very concerned about the following:

  • The impact of the global economy on business (56%)
  • Their ability to maintain a common corporate culture (54%)
  • The company’s ability to service remote customers effectively and understand local ways of doing business (52% each)

“Rapid global business expansion presents significant management challenges and opportunities,” said Foster.

“As companies expand and enter these new markets, their success will depend on streamlining their global operations and differentiating their products and services. At the same time, senior management must maintain and strengthen their companies’ core values and corporate identity, as well as secure a diverse and highly collaborative leadership team with knowledge that spans disparate markets.”

About the survey: Accenture conducted a telephone survey (Sept.-Dec. ’07) of 867 C-suite”executives – those at the highest level of senior management – and heads of key functional areas of companies in the United States, United Kingdom, Italy, France, Germany, Spain, Japan and China.

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