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back to index backLATINtalk March,  2006

Survey: Profit Growth, Strategy Execution CEO's Top Concerns in Mexico and South America

Spurring company growth has become a major CEO concern in Mexico and South America, according to a global survey of chief executives by The Conference Board, the global research and business membership organization.

The Conference Board's sixth annual survey of CEO challenges covers the views of 658 CEOs from more than 40 countries. Twenty-six are from Mexico and South America, the majority for manufacturing firms.

Profit growth ranks first on the list of Mexico CEOs’ top 10 challenges, and second on the list of South America CEOs. Profit growth was also cited as a major challenge by CEOs from the U.S., Asia, and Europe.

CEOs in Latin America have similar concerns,” says Henry Silvert, Research Associate at The Conference Board and author of The Conference Board report. But there are a few critical challenges that differ between CEOs in Mexico and South America. ”

Profit growth and consistent execution of strategy by top management ranked first and second as critical challenges in Mexico and South America. Customer loyalty/retention is in the top 10 ranking of CEOs in both regions. CEOs in Mexico are more concerned with top-line growth, product innovation, lack of pricing power, motivating employees, adapting to change and seizing opportunities in North America. CEOs in South America, on the other hand, are more concerned with industry consolidation, cost control, integration, European competition and expanding in Western Europe.

While agreeing that they must stimulate innovation and motivate employees, CEOs in Mexico do not rank HR issues among their top challenges.

According to CEO survey participants in Mexico, the greatest business challenges facing them in the next 8 to 12 months are profit growth, execution of strategy, the unstable Mexican economy, industry consolidation, and maintaining leadership. Crucial issues in the next 3 to 5 years: steady top-line growth, execution of strategy, expanding in South America, strategic planning, cost of innovation, and industry consolidation.

CEO respondents from South America view increasing production, earnings and market share, corporate expansion, growth, diversification and consolidation and government regulation as the greatest business challenges facing them in the next 8 to 12 months. They see industry consolidation and diversification as continuing challenges in the next 3 to 5 years, with the added challenges of changing technology and making new profitable investments.

For the future, CEOs of Europe and the U.S. have slightly different concerns. CEOs based in Europe are most concerned with speed, flexibility, and adaptability to change, followed by profit growth, and sustained and steady top-line growth.

In the U.S., the top challenges in the future will be how to sustain and generate steady top-line growth, execute strategy by top management, customer loyalty/retention, and profit growth.

Source: Workforce Performance Solutions - GAI

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