Gartner Business Quarterly

Proven guidance for C-suite action

2020 Q4

The Resilient Enterprise

Strength and agility to lead through disruption

With the world in turmoil and no shortage of global crises ahead, “resilience” is the word of the hour. It’s time to consider where flexibility should take priority. Learn how the executive team should set overall resilience plans to build capacity to bounce back from any setback.

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    In this issue

    Resilience Is an Urgent C-Suite Priority
    The pandemic has magnified the importance of resilience as an enterprisewide capability. See how leaders can strengthen the ability to withstand and rebound from disruption.

    Eliminating Barriers to Technology Work Across the Enterprise
    Technology producers exist throughout the company, not just in IT. How can functional leaders empower those who build their own solutions?

    How to Import Temporary Talent From Law Firms and Suppliers
    “Renting” talent from an outside firm can help you manage a growing workload by leveraging people who are already familiar with your business.

    Safe, Ambitious Automation Testing
    Introducing workload automation boosts enterprise resilience, but legal teams might hesitate out of fear of disruption. Learn three ways to experiment while keeping risk low.

    The Secret to Marketing Through Disruption
    Ninety percent of marketers agree they must adapt to shifting customer needs, but companies can’t react to every swerve. Learn to address only the most long-lasting changes.

    The Route to a More Resilient Supply Chain
    The pandemic has shown the fragility of global supply chains that are only optimized for cost efficiency. See how to increase resilience without losing competitive edge.

    How UPS Assesses ROI on Resilience-Driven ESG Spending
    How do ESG leaders evaluate sustainable investments? Discover strategies to amplify resilience by creating long-term value for the business, the environment and society.

    Leaders Should Help Teams Save Mental Energy as Small Changes Pile Up
    The cumulative impact of small workflow adjustments and technology glitches can sap employees’ ability to cope. Learn how frequent tracking and peer support get big results.

    Keep Innovating Your Business Model to Weather the Unknown
    Want to start probing current models and inventing new ones rather than just reacting to disruption? Discover options for innovation now and in the future.

    Analytics Showcase 2020: 6 Data Plays That Informed Fast Business Moves
    See how these organizations use data and predictive tools to improve staffing, coaching, savings, sales and marketing.

    The Resilient Enterprise
    Letter From the Editor

    Executives in every quarter of the enterprise are telling us they learned a huge lesson this year: Lean, mean and just-in-time don’t work so well when the whole world is immersed in turmoil. And with no shortage of global crises ahead, it’s time to consider where buffers and flexibility should take priority.

    “Resilience” is the word of the hour, even in the throes of recession. In this issue of Gartner Business Quarterly, we make this gauzy concept concrete. As Roberta Witty and Peter Young write in our top story, the organization as a whole “must build the capability to bounce back from any kind of setback — whether it’s a pandemic, natural disaster, economic change, government decision, competitive onslaught, cyberattack or espionage.”

    In a series of short articles, we’ll explain how the executive team should set overall resilience plans. We’ll also deliver specific, cost-effective (and underused) tactics for a more adaptable culture, workforce, supply chain and business model. You’ll learn how to be nimble without becoming distracted, how you can expand your team temporarily with people who already know your business, how to automate — in phases — to free up capacity, how to weigh where it’s necessary to build in extra options and, just as importantly, where it’s not. Even purposeful ESG spending can help your company withstand and recover from disruption.

    You’ll find real-world experience shared by leaders at an international group of organizations, both large and midsize, private and public, including TE Connectivity, Marks and Spencer, CHEP Europe, UPS, Coca-Cola, İşbank, St. Michael’s Hospital of Unity Health Toronto and the Virginia Department of Transportation.

    Each issue of GBQ advises you on aligning with others and reaching maximum effectiveness so your organization can achieve its goals, be bold and principled, and bring employees, investors and the public along for the ride.

    The journal also includes departments that keep you up to speed — Cutting Edge, a graphics-intensive look at provocative new data, and Briefs, short takes about smarter spending and planning, talent and culture, growth and innovation, and data and technology.

    We welcome your feedback. Please contact me at
    judy.pasternak@gartner.com

    — Judy Pasternak

    The Trends That Strategists Are Watching

    Heads of strategy are paying attention to the growing power of large players, governmental oversight, the deterioration of globalization and the erosion of industry boundaries. They are actively planning for faster digital changes in their markets. What most aren’t monitoring: Unionization and the immigrant workforce.

    A Twist on Digital Acceleration: More CEOs Now Want to Be Fast Followers

    Sixty-five percent of CEOs and senior managers say the coronavirus crisis is speeding up digital business transformation, and 29% say they’ve shifted the focus of their previous efforts. But their appetite to be first to introduce business innovations in their markets has been waning. On the upswing: Nearly half now want the capability to jump in soon after others lead the way.

    A Twist on Digital Acceleration: More CEOs Now Want to Be Fast Followers

    Sixty-five percent of CEOs and senior managers say the coronavirus crisis is speeding up digital business transformation, and 29% say they’ve shifted the focus of their previous efforts. But their appetite to be first to introduce business innovations in their markets has been waning. On the upswing: Nearly half now want the capability to jump in soon after others lead the way.

    The Purpose of the Postpandemic Office

    Two-thirds of employees would like to work from home at least once a week after the pandemic. Most companies (72%) expect to reduce their real estate footprint by 10% or more in the next two years.

    This issue of Gartner Business Quarterly contains insights from the practical experience of:

    • Avon
    • CHEP Europe
    • The Coca-Cola Company
    • Ingram Micro
    • İşbank
    • Jaguar Land Rover
    • Marks and Spencer
    • Polaris
    • Regions Financial
    • St. Michael’s Hospital of Unity Health Toronto
    • T-Mobile
    • TE Connectivity
    • Tech Data
    • UPS
    • The Virginia Department of Transportation
    About Gartner Business Quarterly

    Gartner Business Quarterly provides business executives with insights from best practices research and the real-world experience of practitioners. The journal’s insights especially equip executives to tackle challenges that cut across the C-suite and affect multiple executive teams. Writers, contributors and data analysts are members of Gartner Research & Advisory (R&A) whose teams are led by Executive VP Mike Harris. The Gartner Business Quarterly publication is led by Editor-in-Chief Judy Pasternak with executive sponsorship by Group VP Scott Christofferson.

    2020 Issues

    How to Rebuild Better

    Rebuilding for the “new normal” and beyond

    Download Q3 2020