Sustainability Tops CEO Agendas for Growth, Says Survey

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by KnowESG,

Gartner, Inc.

KnowESG_Sustainability Tops CEO Agendas for Growth, Says Survey
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Nearly 70% of CEOs see sustainability as a key driver of business growth, according to a recent Gartner survey.

This trend is holding strong despite economic challenges, highlighting a shift in corporate priorities.

"As CEOs reset their long-term strategies, environmental sustainability remains one of the leading factors that will frame competition," says Kristin Moyer, Gartner analyst. "Despite much corporate greenwash, recent economic conditions could have triggered a reversion to environmental, social and governance (ESG) cynicism and a refocus on profit at all costs. However, the overall commitment of CEOs appears unwavering."

The Survey Breakdown

  • Over 400 CEOs across various industries and regions participated.

  • Sustainability ranks among the top 10 business priorities, exceeding efficiency and productivity.

  • Leading sustainability strategies for growth include:

  1. Sustainable products and services (33%)

  2. Sustainable business practices (18%)

  3. Stakeholder engagement (18%)

  4. Decarbonisation (18%)

  • Digital technology is seen as an underutilised tool (8%) with immense potential to accelerate sustainability goals. Examples include:

  1. IoT and data analytics for optimising wind turbines and reducing emissions.

  2. AI and IoT for minimising food waste.

  3. Circular economy marketplaces for creating revenue and reducing waste.

Climate Change as a Business Disruptor

  • Over half of CEOs (54%) report their businesses are impacted by changing weather patterns.

  • More than half (51%) are adapting their operations in response to these changes.

  • Shifting weather patterns primarily affect operating dynamics (30%), particularly logistics and supply chains.

  • Relocation strategies (nearshoring) and automation are other key responses (27%).

For more details, Gartner clients can access the full report "2024 CEO Survey — The Year of Strategy Relaunches."

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Source: Gartner


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