As a result of Covid-19, CEOs of the world’s most influential companies have identified talent risk as one of the most significant challenges to growth, and are examining their wider societal contributions and company purpose.

In the first study of its kind to measure how CEOs priorities and concerns have changed during the global pandemic, KPMG International Cooperative (KPMG) conducted two surveys, one at the onset of the pandemic in January and another in July and August.

The 2020 KPMG CEO Outlook finds that the agenda of leaders has radically shifted since the beginning of the year, as existing trends like ESG (Environmental, Social and Governance) factors, flexible working and digital transformation have accelerated.

When reflecting on prospects for growth over the next three years, 32 percent of CEOs are less confident now than they were at the start of the year in the global economy.

CEOs, however, are more optimistic about their own country’s growth prospects (45 percent confident), and more confident again in the resilience of their own business over the coming three years.

Honson To, Chairman, KPMG China and Asia Pacific said, this report provides a truly comprehensive understanding of the impact Covid-19 has had on executive leadership at the world’s most influential companies.

“Against a backdrop of extraordinary challenges, we explore how their strategies have shifted, how their concerns have changed, and we gauge their outlook for the global economy.

“It’s a monumental study that should provide all of us with important conversation starters for our clients and insights into how they are handling the pandemic,” he said.