I’m sceptical of the value from surveys of executive opinion – why should I care e.g. whether X% of CEOs think that getting the talent they need is a problem? This one on attitudes to socio-political issues is interesting, but begs the same question. At least it makes the point that these big outside factors can present opportunities as well as theats. I’d go further, and be looking for ways to lead changes that would be desirable. Some really big issues will be way out of reach, of course, but plenty of firms have significant influence – see earlier post on Wal-Mart efforts on sustainability, which cannot help but have an effect on public attitudes.
And this is not just a consideration for the super-big firms. Much smaller businesses can make a significant impact on the attitudes of local consumers and local government, or on customers and others in their particular market segment.
This is an important strategic management capability that deserves more attention – especially when there is the opportunity to make the world a better place, as well as grow cash flows!