(Background music: Welcome page with the J.P. Morgan and Chase logos and an illustration of dozens of skyscrapers. Above the illustration appears “Rising to the challenge: Business Leaders Outlook 2022.” The text and skyscrapers fade off the screen.)
(Rolling text) For nearly two years, midsize U.S. businesses have been rising to the challenges of the COVID-19 economy.
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(Rolling text) Three issues remain on the minds of midsize business leaders, according to our survey.
68% cited the tight labor market
62% cited clogged supply chains
58% cited the higher cost of business
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(Rolling text above skyscrapers) Many have stood up to every challenge and shown they will not be defeated. Their resiliency appears to have paid off.
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(Rolling text next to line chart) Economic optimism: Looking ahead, business leaders are optimistic overall about the economic landscape of the next 12 months.
Rates of optimism for 2022:
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(Text around chart and icons) How businesses expect to grow
Doughnut chart: 95% of business leaders expect their revenues to increase or remain the same in 2022
Globe icon: Expanding into new markets/geographies
Brain icon: Innovating or diversifying products/services
Bar-chart icon: Through decreases in consumer demand
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(Text above skyscrapers) Find these and other insights by taking a deeper dive into the entire survey results.
(Text in green box) Download the full report
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For nearly two years, midsize U.S. businesses have been rising to the challenges of the COVID-19 economy. Issues that were considered temporary disruptions have proven to be much longer lasting. But they haven’t been viewed as insurmountable.
Our 2022 Business Leaders Outlook survey indicates that today’s executives are experts at reimagining, renewing and rebuilding their companies. Many have stood up to every challenge and shown they will not be defeated. Their resiliency appears to have paid off—and is fueling near-record levels of optimism for growth.
Midsize U.S. business leaders are more optimistic about their companies now (83% have a positive outlook over the next 12 months) than before the pandemic (76%), according to the survey. And for good reason: 70% of leaders said their businesses have returned to or exceeded pre-pandemic levels of profitability.
Nine out of 10 of those surveyed expect their businesses to grow and thrive over the next year. None of the respondents said they are afraid of going out of business. In fact, capital expenditures and credit needs—typical signs of plans to expand—are both expected to go up significantly from a year ago.
These three business challenges—once thought to be transitory—remain on the minds of midsize business leaders, according to our survey.
Business leaders said the worker shortage is the biggest challenge they’re facing. They believe they’ll need to get creative to fill positions and keep current employees. They also expect to pay higher wages for talent.
The pandemic forced many midsize businesses to focus on global issues that didn’t affect them before. The supply chain is a prime example—and business leaders see it as a prime opportunity to mitigate risks going forward.
The math is simple: Labor shortage + supply chain issues = higher costs. But business leaders believe higher expected revenues in the coming year should help their companies keep the inflation equation in check.
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