Gartner Quarterly Update on Top Emerging Business Risk

New in 3Q19: Strategic assumptions have the potential for rapid impact should risks materialize in your organization.

The top emerging risks in 3Q19 all relate to the challenges that organizations face in identifying and executing business strategy, according to the latest Gartner Emerging Risk Survey.  

Gartner Emerging Risk Tracker

Surveyed risk management professionals identified digital misconceptions as the top risk. In other words, these are digital initiatives that are failing to deliver hoped-for results — causing organizations to see a gap between expectation and results. 

Next came lagging digitalization. Most firms expect their transformations will take at least two to three more years, and a growing number of signs suggest economic conditions could decline before they are completed. Organizations with lagging digitalization efforts risk regaining market capitalization in responding to recessionary pressures.

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New to the top three list of emerging risks is the repercussions of strategic assumptions. Executives believe more than half of the time that they and their teams spend on strategic planning is wasted, and the quality of the resulting plans generally does not meet expectations. This is because assumptions made during strategic planning processes often become outdated or incorrect before execution. 

Risk management leaders must be vigilant to ensure these risks are seriously considered and acted upon by business leadership.

About the Gartner Emerging Risk Survey

Each quarter, the Gartner Emerging Risks Survey captures and analyzes senior executives’ opinions on emerging risks, and provides actionable insight on identifying and mitigating those risks.

Gartner defines an emerging risk as one that is not materially impacting the organization today, and is highly uncertain because its evolution is rapid, nonlinear or both.

Learn more: Emerging risk trends

Gartner Risk Management Leadership Council clients can view the 3Q19 Emerging Risk Report.

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