Executive Perspectives on Top Risks for 2024 and a Decade Later

screenshot of the first page of Executive Perspectives on Top Risks for 2024 and a Decade Later
Proactively Managing Top Risks for Sustainable Advantage

Protiviti and NC State University’s ERM Initiative are pleased to provide our 12th annual report focusing on the top risks currently on the minds of 1,143 directors and senior executives around the globe. This report reflects their views on the extent to which a broad collection of risks is likely to affect their organizations over the next year (2024) and a decade later (2034).

Robust conversations about assumptions related to an organization’s future, overlapping root causes across different risks and dependences on single responses to manage multiple risks can benefit executives and boards with insights about how a given risk may interact with others to impact an organization’s strategic success and long-term viability.

Major findings include:  

  • Multiple sources of uncertainty create potential for a wide range of near-term horizon risks. The shift in top risks from last year reveals a global business environment experiencing significant change, with many new risk concerns for 2024 relative to last year.
  • Recent geopolitical developments are changing the risk landscape. Prior to the October 7, 2023, developments in the Middle East, no risks were rated at the “Significant Impact” level for 2024; however, after the attacks, many risks increased, with four rated at the “Significant Impact” level.
  • Economic concerns zoom to the top risk position near-term. Economic conditions, particularly inflationary pressures, replaced the ability to attract, develop and retain top talent, manage shifts in labor expectations, and address succession challenges as the number one risk globally for 2024.
  • Myriad technology-related challenges include escalated cybersecurity risks, continued data privacy concerns linked to increased third-party reliance, the need to upskill employees to realize fully the value proposition of emerging technologies, and the limitations of legacy infrastructure. These technology-linked risks are interrelated and need to be considered collectively by executives and the board, as exposures triggered by one risk may lead to increased exposure to other risks. 

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