Directors Focusing on Risk, Digital Transformation and Sustainability
In its 2023 Board of Directors Survey, research and consulting firm Gartner queried nearly 300 directors across industries and geographies to identify board priorities for the remainder of the year and found a major focus on risk appetite, digital acceleration and sustainability.
Risk Appetite and Growth Strategies
The year 2023 is expected to be a more risk-embracing year than 2022, with 64% of boards expecting to increase their risk appetite in 2023. Forty-six percent of boards are willing to accept greater risk as they attempt to expand product lines and increase growth. Recession and economic uncertainty as seen as the number one hurdle to sustained growth. Nearly half (48%) of respondents say they are concerned about economic stability.
The survey shows respondents taking steps to focus on digital transformation, but with mixed results when it comes to actual progress. While 60% of boards have achieved their desired level of progress or met their digital business optimization goals, just 30% of digital leaders have advanced significantly toward digital transformation goals. Many boards are prioritizing a digital economic architecture, with 71% currently altering or planning to alter their existing enterprise economic structure.
Sustainability and DEI
Because of stakeholder considerations, 80% of the directors surveyed expect increased investment in and enhanced focus on sustainability and 75% anticipate the same for DEI. Fifty-nine percent of boards say employees are the top stakeholder considering DEI when evaluating organizations. The survey also found that 47% of society considers sustainability to a “substantial or significant extent” when evaluating a company.
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