U.S. CEOs, CMOs lead world in confidence about brands, crisis plans: Worldcom

The network's World Confidence Report found American business leaders are more bullish on their ability to avoid a crisis.

Photo credit: Getty Images
Photo credit: Getty Images

NEW YORK: U.S. business leaders are far more confident than their counterparts in other regions when it comes to brand image and their ability to survive a crisis, according to a study released on Tuesday by Worldcom Public Relations Group.

In the World Confidence Report, the network asked business leaders around the world about issues that influence business success and what they see as the biggest potential threats

Attracting talent was the single biggest concern among respondents. Meanwhile, business leaders said they felt good about their ability to keep customers happy.

However, the report’s most striking finding was high confidence among U.S. business leaders. In response to almost every question asked, American executives were significantly more confident than respondents in other regions.

The survey did not delve into the motivations behind the responses. However, Todd Lynch, MD at Worldcom, said the differences could spring from the general business landscape in the U.S.

"Opportunity to build and grow business in America remains strong and survives fluctuating economies and myriad other challenges," Lynch said. "However, with so many challenges on a global scale...it may be worth American leaders sense-checking if this heightened confidence is justified."

Leaders were asked about communications-related issues including confidence in their ability to protect brands in a crisis. In Japan, 14% surveyed felt confident about this topic, while 17% did in the U.K. The number was significantly higher in the U.S. at 38%.

Questioned about whether they have the corporate image and brand reputation to achieve their objectives, 40% of U.S. respondents said they do. In Japan, 12% surveyed felt confident about this, while in the U.K. 20% did.

In terms of confidence in corporate plans and policies, 22% of U.K. leaders said they were optimistic about them, as did 20% in Japan. In the U.S., 36% said they felt good about plans and policies.

However, one area where the U.S. lagged behind the rest of the world is trust in the media. The report found that only 6% saw this as a source of optimism.

The online survey -- conducted by two independent research firms -- reached 540 CEOs and CMOs in six G7 countries (France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the U.K. and the U.S.) as well as China. It generated 585 responses (167 in America, 106 in Asia; and 312 in EMEA) from leaders of all ages and business sizes. The survey reached 339 CEOs and 246 CMOs.

Worldcom supplemented those responses with 45 additional questionnaires sent to clients, including strong representation from the Czech Republic and Slovakia.

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