What, Me Worry?

IBM study finds Chemicals and Petroleum CEOs more confident than a peer group of other verticals facing a world of ‘increasing operational complexity.’

A recent study from IBM’s Chemicals and Petroleum unit, compares C&P CEO’s attitudes to ‘complexity’ with those of a peer group from other industries. In the executive summary1, IBM reveals, ‘In an increasingly complex world, CEOs are learning to master complexity in countless ways—redesigning operating strategies for speed and flexibility and considering how best to take advantage of global efficiencies while addressing local needs.’

C&P CEOs are ‘slightly ahead of the crowd in this respect.’ 52%percent are focusing on simplifying and operations to ‘manage complexity more effectively.’ The ‘most dexterous’ CEOs are more intent on reducing fixed costs and increasing their variable costs (sic), so that they can rapidly scale up or down.

A ‘surprising’ number of peer group CEOs feel ill-equipped to cope with a ‘world of increasing complexity.’ But the C&P CEOs are confident in their future. ‘Only’ 64% expect complexity to grow and 59% think they can handle it. The apparent complacency of the C&P CEOs reminds us of the old adage that the best business in the world is a well run oil company. And the second best is a badly run oil company!

1 www.oilit.com/links.1007_1

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