Gartner Research

2019 CEO Survey: The Year of Challenged Growth

Published: 16 April 2019

ID: G00385368

Analyst(s): Mark Raskino


2019 Gartner CEO and Senior Business Executive Survey results show that CIOs must apply technology to help CEOs diversify revenue streams, sustain profitability and make key geographic moves in a waning global economic cycle.

Table Of Contents


  • Report Overview
  • Extend and Scale Digital Diversification of Revenue Streams to Prolong Growth
    • Rising Economic Challenges Are Visible in CEO Priority Shifts, but There’s No Sign of Crisis Yet
    • Activist Investors Impacted 46% of CEOs’ Strategic Thinking, but Only 9% Are Focused on Divesting
    • CEO Unprompted Mentions of “Diversification” and “Digital” Rose Substantially Year Over Year
    • 82% of CEOs Have a Digital Transformation or Initiative, Up From 62% in 2018
  • Exploit Any Geographic Business Shifts to Drive Digital Transformation Faster
    • Geographic Growth Is Most Popular, but 23% Also See Significant Impacts From Trade Controls
    • 77% Plan to Increase Investment in Digital Capabilities and 74% in IT in 2019
  • Untangle Executive and Board Confusion That Impedes Digital Business Progress
    • Top Thinking Gaps Between Executives and Boards Are Time Horizon, Digital, Strategy and Pacing
    • Digital Giants Loom Large — 64% of CEOs Believe the Giants Will Be in Their Industry in Five Years
    • CEOs Expect CIOs and Digital Leaders to Own or Co-Own the Digital Product Future
  • Evolve Digital Productivity Engineering Ideas to Redirect the Cost-Cutting Reflex
    • Technology Is the No. 3 Tool for Cost Control but the No. 1 Tool for Productivity Improvement
  • Level Up Executive Team Tech Savvy and Shift Competency Development Efforts
    • Sales, Risk, Supply Chain, Legal and HR Officers Are Most in Need of More Digital Savvy
    • Talent Management, Tech Enablement and Data Centricity Are the Most Needed Competencies

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