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Growth Is Powered by People*
*just ask the world's top companies

Spanning 52 different industries and multiple continents, what could the organizations on the 2024 ranking of the World’s Most Admired Companies (WMAC) have in common?

We surveyed them to find out—and here’s what we discovered: even in uncertain economic conditions, WMACs have big growth ambitions, and they know what it will take to reach their goals. And despite their differences, they almost universally agree on the most important key to unlocking sustained business success: people.

Growth on the Horizon

98% of WMACs anticipate growth in the next three years:

  • 64% expect to grow up to 10%
  • 27% expect to grow 11% - 20%
  • 7% expect to grow more than 20%

Which kind of growth are they prioritizing?

  • 47% - growing bottom line profit
  • 36% - growing top line revenue
  • 17% - growing market share

How They’ll Get There

The WMAC’s top 5 strategies for growth:

  1. New products or services
  2. Enhancing customer experiences
  3. Improving existing products or services
  4. Mergers & acquisitions
  5. New customer segments

The Tech Paradox

Technology is an essential part of WMAC executives’ growth plans:

  • Tech adoption is their no. 1 tactic for growth
  • Technological innovation is among their top 3 innovation priorities
  • 88% are actively leveraging or experimenting with AI across the whole business
  • 86% see AI featuring in their near-future growth strategy
  • The speed of digital transformation is among their top growth concerns

Still, 82% say talent is more important than technology to drive growth.

The Power of People

  • 67% of WMACs place primary responsibility for innovation in the organization, not with just a few senior executives.
  • 63% of the growth drivers prioritized by WMACs are linked directly to people.
  • 83% make use of flexible, cross-functional teams to execute innovative initiatives.
  • WMAC executives say growth through M&A relies on the right leadership (41%) and the right culture (39%).
  • Two-thirds of the WMAC’s biggest concerns about transforming for growth revolve around people.

Building on the Foundation

We asked WMAC executives, “How would you describe the organizational changes needed to prepare your company for future growth?”

“An evolution” = 67%

“A revolution” = 33%

Are You Set Up for Growth?

  • Do you know how you’ll grow?
  • Do you know what kind of organization, leaders, skills, and culture you’ll need to get there?
  • Are you confident in your implementation plan?

The World’s Most Admired Companies know that while there are many paths to growth, a transformation strategy is necessary to get there.

If you’re ready to unleash your organization’s potential, Korn Ferry can help you:

  • Transform for growth without losing sight of your core purpose and values
  • Identify the best sources of growth
  • Reveal the ideal structure and operating model to facilitate change for your business
  • Gauge your current and future talent needs
  • Assess the culture you have today against the one you need for the future
  • Translate your growth vision and strategy into action

Find out how to transform for growth.

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