What Business Leaders Can Do to Prepare for What’s Next

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Key Takeaways

  • 68% of business leaders view economic uncertainty as a significant business risk in 2024.
  • Organizations must learn to leverage their data effectively to inform strategic growth decisions.
  • To successfully embrace new technologies, it’s imperative to start with strategy so that your data and people stay secure.

Organizations have been operating in a time of profound uncertainty, and the speed of change is only increasing. How do you break down what feels impossible into manageable, actionable steps?

Here’s what we recommend for organizations looking to grow, innovate, and stay ahead of the competition:

Be Ready to Adapt

A 2024 HLB survey found that 68% of business leaders view economic uncertainty as a significant business risk. Yet, even in turbulent market conditions, business leaders believe in their organizations' resilience. 85% are confident in their company’s ability to grow revenue over the next 12 months.

It all starts with innovation. Focusing on core competencies, eliminating product lines or services that distract from core business objectives, and providing superior customer service will keep organizations viable. You can’t always use the past to predict the future.

Leaders should develop three to four business models that outline various plans for success. Developing multiple scenarios encourages a more deliberate path forward, eliminating the tendency to choose the middle path.

Truly resilient organizations will be those who focus on staying relevant. They will take a deep look at what they offer, from product to consumer experience, and take the necessary steps to enact change.

Embrace New Technologies

The digital revolution continues to impact the way we do business, with AI becoming a prominent strategy for business leaders.

statistics about new technologies

Strengthening digital capabilities will be a key component of future growth and innovation for leaders.

“In the last two decades, organizations that have separated themselves are the ones who have committed and embraced digital business,” says Ross Manson, Chief Advisory & Industry Officer | Eide Bailly

Generative AI has already had profound impacts on organizations. Early adopters of M365 Copilot report a 70% increase in productivity. But it’s important that organizations go into new technology initiatives with a clear strategy, making sure that their technology roadmap aligns with their overall business objectives.

  • Take our AI readiness assessment to gauge your digital maturity and discover resources to help you prepare for the future of technology.

Understand Your Data

With digital transformation comes more data than we’ve ever had before. Understanding and harnessing that data will be critical for organizations that wish to make strategic growth decisions.

The future of business is based on the ability to make informed business decisions in real time with accurate data. This means relying on far more than just your financial statements. Business leaders should embrace leading indicators like operational analytics to get a clear snapshot of their organization’s current state and where they’re headed.

Moreover, it will be impossible to maximize the value of emerging AI technology without first addressing an organization’s data infrastructure and ecosystem. Leaders must have a data strategy in place that lays out a plan for data security, privacy, and governance.

Prioritize Security

66% of surveyed senior IT professionals believe that innovative technologies, including generative AI, can further increase exposure to cyber risk.

As your organization strives to embrace new technologies, it’s imperative to start with strategy so that your data and people stay secure.

Leaders must understand how complex it is to secure the digital workplace. Technology is advancing rapidly, making cybercrime more sophisticated. Cybercriminals often operate as businesses, using marketing, HR, and internal customer support. This shift in cybercrime is causing the cost of dealing with an attack to rise, with the average cyberattack now costing $4.45 million.

Do you have a clear plan for data security and privacy? Evaluate whether there are provisions in the budget for data governance, data security tools, and compliance with data privacy regulations.

Focus on the Future of Your Organization

While it’s hard to know what’s around the next corner, organizational leaders who re-evaluate their business model, look for ways to embrace digital transformation, prioritize their employees, and learn from their data will be better positioned to move forward and plan for the future.

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