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Leaders across industries are investing in artificial intelligence (AI) tools to address a wide range of issues they feel their businesses will need to address in 2024, according to the recently released Crowe Executive Outlook Study a collaborative report from Crowe LLP and Forbes. 

The CEOs also identified the 2024 U.S. federal elections as an anticipated source of volatility that will impact their industry and business. 

The Crowe Executive Outlook Study that surveyed 500 industry leaders from companies with $500 million or more in annual revenues during August and September of 2023 revealed a shift in their top-of-mind concerns. A previous survey conducted in the fall of 2022 had identified economic change, supply chain disruptions and talent shortages as leading sources of anticipated business disruption. 

“AI and federal elections, while not unexpected, have emerged as the most significant factors likely to create volatility concerns across all industries for U.S. business leaders in 2024,” said Crowe CEO Mark Baer said on Feb. 8. “History has shown us that the companies that embrace the concept of perpetual evolution are the ones that are fastest to adapt to market dynamics and are thereby ultimately best positioned to thrive in changing market conditions with dynamic client expectations.” 

Other key findings of the survey include: 

  • Executives feel AI is currently creating an extreme or high level of volatility for their organization and anticipate this continuing for the next three years. 
  • AI was selected most often when those surveyed were asked to identify the issue currently having the greatest impact on their organizations. 
  • Top industries extensively evaluating and investing in AI include banking, private equity, and technology, media & telecommunications (TMT). 
  • The upcoming federal elections are creating a high level of uncertainty and volatility for organizations, which could impact the next three years. 
  • Organizations with executives who view volatility as an opportunity rather than a hindrance continue to outperform their rivals. 
  • These identified executives are currently investing more in workforce skills and workplace diversity and feel better equipped to benefit from volatility.