Odgers Berndtson highlights the effect of business disruption

By Allen Jack

Global executive search firm Odger Berndtson (OB) has released a report summarising the extent of workplace disruption in the corporate world.

OB APAC’s research indicates that only 15% of surveyed executives place enough trust in their own management team to successfully navigate through times of economic crisis, such as natural disasters, rapid technological evolution or pandemics. 

This disconcerting statistic is exacerbated by the fact that 95% of executives agreed that providing effective management during such times was paramount to guaranteeing long-term success and profitability. 

“Business executives lack confidence in the ability of their top people to drive future success,” remarked Mark Braithwaite, Managing Partner of OB APAC.

“This is a crisis not just for those businesses, their shareholders and employees, but also the wider economy.”

Holding out for strong leadership

Although dealing with the coronavirus pandemic has been deleterious to the global economy in and of itself, the Asia Pacific region is threatened by economic recession and affected by plummeting prices in the oil industry.

“The added challenge for business leaders in Australia is that we are likely to enter our first recession in over 30 years,” said Tim Sleep, MD of OB Australia.

Consequently, Sleep reasons, managers which demonstrate the capability to succeed despite the mounting difficulties will be in very high demand.

OB will be measuring the confidence in corporate management with a new index, compiling data from 2,000 senior members of staff at companies with sales revenues between US$50mn and $5bn and tracking the result.


Reviewing the meaning of good leadership

The global economic disruptions being witnessed may transform how companies view effective management, something which, once the crisis has begun to dissipate, may reveal more effective ways of working generally. 

After all, OB’s research indicates that a slim 16% believe its management has been effective so far and a slightly smaller 15% remain confident that things could yet improve. Clearly, something needs to change.

“The uncomfortable truth for some CEOs is that a strong track record does not equate to having the capabilities to deal with future disruption,” OB notes in its report. 

“The more progressive leaders see only opportunity: what is required is a healthy attitude towards change.” 

Recognising that corporate agility, flexibility and proactive thinking will be integral to management for the foreseeable future will enable executives to approach their business in a new way, something which is needed in uncertain times.

“If leaders have the humility to accept that they don’t know everything, they can create a culture of innovation where they include a lot more people in thinking through business problems, not expecting to be right every time,” Braithwaite concludes.

For more information on business topics in APAC, please take a look at the latest edition of Business Chief APAC

Follow Business Chief on LinkedIn and Twitter


Featured Videos

View all

Schneider Electric - Global Specialist in Energy Management

Digital Strategy

Allianz Malaysia: Closer to customers through digital