- Talanta.co survey explores CEOs plans for next three years
Mbabane – Talanta.co’s Eswatini CEOs study has revealed that more than 70 percent are confident in the growth prospects of the domestic economy, and their businesses as confidence in global economic growth is rising.
“We endeavoured to uncover deep long-term insights on what business leaders saw – and were planning for – over the next three years. We needed to spark a conversation and, in the process, help shape a leadership agenda fit to take on tomorrow. After surveying over 100 Eswatini leaders of companies in many sectors, more than 70 percent remain confident in the growth prospects of the domestic economy, and their businesses as confidence in global economic growth is rising. However, they are also very much aware of the risks associated with that development and thus safeg uard against significant threats,” said Managing Partner Dumi Jere.
He said as a result of the pandemic, there are profound changes that continue to shape the concerns and priorities of CEOs, for example, the evolution and integration of advanced technologies, a more informed and influential customer, and the pressure to keep up with the new pace of business, to name a few. In addition, external forces continue to create unique challenges for CEOs in Eswatini, with so much geopolitical uncertainty and the impending political dialogue being the latest examples.
He added, “notwithstanding all these, the CEOs remain confident that they can successfully navigate through those changes and transform their organizations to prosper. Eswatini CEOs, according to the study, aim to build their businesses in a better society. To this end, most CEOs are leaning into their corporate purpose and values to drive action ESG (Environment, Sustainability, and Governance) initiatives, recognising both heightened expectations from stakeholders and new opportunities to gain a competitive advantage.”
He said it is now exactly two years since the World Health Organisation (WHO) declared COVID-19 a global pandemic in March 2020. Since then, we have been in a period of ever-changing dynamics regarding how we live, work, interact, play, and much more.
“Business leaders have operated under immense pressure for most of that period. As a result, they have run their organisation like Formular 1 cars. At one turn, speeding up to match the speed of global change, at the subsequent turn braking to go into a pit stop and assess the health of their business and employees.”
He continued, “Many unknowns have been akin to navigating a motor vehicle in fog conditions. Along with that, they have had to anticipate what might unfold in the future. A lot of scenario planning has been taking place in the virtual boardrooms. Some of the scenarios imagined did arrive, and with that, undeniable challenges that demanded new ways of operating.
As the scenario planning in the boardroom continues, business leaders are increasingly focusing on “The Next Normal.” The fallout from the pandemic demands targeted action; therefore, “The Next Normal” requires fresh leadership ideas. That means a departure from the way business was done before. Sekusikhatsi! It is time to change. Modern leadership means knowing how to make the most of digitalization and technology, diverse talent, and the opinions of a range of stakeholders.”
The survey afforded CEOs and MDs of top businesses in Eswatini an opportunity to reflect and share their most honest thoughts and feelings. Leaders shared the uniform sentiment that there is a need for change if organizations in the Kingdom are to thrive in the future.
From their responses, one thing was visibly evident; they are capable and willing to affect the change needed to face “The Next Normal” with resilience. Doing that demands a different way of thinking and frequent evaluation of decisions and actions. Also required is more engagement with fellow business leaders. This engagement enables the leadership agenda that will take on tomorrow.
This report is a microscope, if you will, into the minds of the top leaders in the Kingdom and how they prioritize their organizations’ needs.