Fortune

How the Future 50 Positioned Themselves for Growth, Even in 2020

In their featured article for Fortune, BCG’s Martin Reeves and Kevin Whitaker unveil the fourth annual Future 50 index, which identifies companies with the greatest capacity to continually reinvent their businesses and sustain long-term growth. The index, codeveloped by the BCG Henderson Institute and Fortune, found that highly vital companies exist across all sectors and geographies. Reeves and Whitaker conclude that “vitality can be achieved everywhere—and even amid a crisis, opportunity awaits companies that are willing and able to look to the future.”

Forbes

Great Consulting Requires Great Clients

The key to a great consultancy lies in having great clients, BCG’s Grant Freeland writes in his column for Forbes. He describes great clients as determined, bold, and honest people who work as one with their consultants, leading and owning any changes that are made. He adds that stand-out clients are those who develop long-term relationships with consultants and set clear goals. “Working with a consultant is a relationship, not a transaction,” Freeland emphasizes.

CNBC

Holiday Shopping Brings Hope for Luxury’s Recovery

Luxury retailers are projected to have a strong holiday season overall despite a difficult 2020, BCG’s Sarah Willersdorf tells CNBC. She explains that the biggest difference this year is that the shopping period is expected to be much longer and as much as a third of all sales will move online—up 20% to 30% from last year. She says the pandemic will continue to boost online shopping as we see a shift away from traditional in-store consumerism. All of retail will be up 5% from current levels, Willersdorf says, as the industry begins to recover.

Business Insider

Key Strategies for the Biden Transition

As the formal US presidential transition begins, BCG’s Sharon Marcil, who has advised three previous US transitions, talks with Business Insider about how to execute a transition successfully amid a pandemic. She says that the most important task is to get everyone on the same page and to mobilize around a clear set of priorities that allow the new administration to effectively drive the president-elect’s agenda. Marcil emphasizes, however, that this can be achieved only with strong communication. “Let's get smart on the issues, set your priorities, move through your plans, and get that alignment quickly so you can allow for some autonomy,” she says.

Forbes

Time to End Virtual Happy Hour? Not So Fast

In her column for Forbes, BCG’s Deborah Lovich considers what makes virtual socializing successful as online happy hours become the new norm. After surveying hundreds of her coworkers, she shares her findings on combating Zoom fatigue. She explains that virtual socializing works when people share a genuine connection, functions are well organized, and events are optional instead of mandatory. The most striking theme, Lovich writes, is to focus on making it personal.

Australian Financial Review

Boards Must Step Up on Cybersecurity

“Cyber risk has moved from fundamentally a technology issue to being a strategic enterprise risk issue,” BCG’s Paul O’Rourke tells the Australian Financial Review. He believes companies are spending too much money to protect against cyber-attacks in the wrong areas. Companies need strategic knowledge of both cyber and business strategy, he emphasizes. O’Rourke outlines BCG’s evidence-based cyber strategy, which helps boards identify how much and where to allocate resources to mitigate risk.

Financial Times

Russian Luxury Markets Start to Recover

The jewelry and luxury sales market in Russia has struggled to stay afloat in recent years as 45% of Russian consumers make their luxury purchases abroad, BCG’s Ivan Kotov tells the Financial Times. He explains that the pandemic has battered domestic retail markets, with sales dropping 50% to 70% in the past year. However, Kotov notes that Russia’s luxury market has been gradually recovering since the reopening of stores in June, a sign of optimism that the industry can overcome this crisis.

Yahoo! Finance

CEOs Hope for “Real Unity” After the Election

BCG’s CEO Rich Lesser tells Yahoo Finance that the business community will work with the next administration to sustain economic growth and help industries rebound from the pandemic. The US faces huge challenges following the election, the most immediate being the pandemic, Lesser asserts. He emphasizes that the country needs to focus on an economic stimulus package and then on medium-term challenges, such as climate, infrastructure, immigration, racial equity, and trade. Lesser says CEOs are hoping to unify around a plan to get things under control.

Fortune

A Plan for Facing the Long COVID Winter

As cold weather approaches, how the US manages the current surge of COVID-19 cases will set the stage for the rest of the pandemic, BCG’s CEO Rich Lesser and Marin Gjaja write for Fortune. They explain that communities need to act boldly, collectively, and decisively to save lives over the coming weeks. Lesser and Gjaja emphasize the need for a new strategy that addresses epidemiological and economic threats and integrates health, social, and economic imperatives until vaccines can end the pandemic.

HBR.org

Why the Global Economy Is Recovering Faster Than Expected

Despite fears of a systemic meltdown due to the pandemic and lockdowns, global recovery has been stronger and faster than many predicted. Writing for HBR.org, BCG’s Philip Carlsson-Szlezak, Paul Swartz, and Martin Reeves explain that while monitoring the overall macro landscape remains important, leaders should focus on measuring, interpreting, and exploiting the dynamics of their sectors and markets in order to invest and recover after the pandemic.

China Daily

China’s Road to Carbon Neutrality

China must take immediate action if it is to reach carbon neutrality by 2060, BCG’s Lars Fæste writes for China Daily. He states that China will need to increase investment significantly, develop new technologies, and push for stronger public awareness of climate issues to achieve this goal. He believes that China’s ambitious climate commitment is obtainable with the nation’s existing capabilities in nuclear power, solar, wind, and new energy vehicles. Fæste asserts that, as a major carbon emitter, China’s strategies and measures in the future will undoubtedly have a major impact on the world.

Bloomberg

BCG’s CEO on Top Issues Weighing on the C-Suite

Business leaders hope to work with the new administration to sustain economic growth and help industries rebound from the pandemic, BCG’s CEO Rich Lesser tells Bloomberg. He believes that although most business leaders will view the new administration as a change, the way they judge that change will largely depend on where things stand three to five months after the election. His most pressing advice to the new administration is that building diversity in leadership teams leads to better outcomes. “If he were to build a more diverse leadership team of different perspectives, the country will go further faster,” Lesser says.

Hindustan Times

The India Moment in the $100 Billion Club

In his coauthored guest column, BCG’s Janmejaya Sinha tells the Hindustan Times that there is a major geopolitical business opportunity after two Indian firms entered the $100 billion market capitalization club. He states that the 2020s could be the “US-India decade” with a major partnership in technology that opens a “fundamental geopolitical business opportunity.” Sinha is hopeful for the possibility of a US-India tech partnership that taps into existing talent and underlying national governance based on democratic values.

The Washington Post

Mediocre Vaccine Rollout May Delay Recovery

A recent BCG report indicates that significant work remains to get through the pandemic. BCG’s CEO, Rich Lesser, tells The Washington Post that Americans, in particular, should expect another full year of “suspended new normal.” The report indicates that the most likely scenario for the US is a “good-but-not-great rollout” of a vaccine, which would delay defeating the pandemic until the first quarter of 2022. An even longer setback is possible due to less effective trials and delayed authorization and distribution of the vaccines. “I expect a year from now there will be a lot of reasons to be optimistic, and we'll go into next winter feeling very different than we’re going into this winter,” says Lesser.

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