Although German executives are mostly optimistic, they understand that their intentions for an accelerated rebound relies on an orderly vaccination rollout throughout the world so that businesses and economies can arrive at a new normal.
Interestingly, however, the continuation of the pandemic is not their most pressing concern. German executives believe the greatest risks to their own businesses are macroeconomic performance and geopolitical tensions. As a result, German companies will be looking toward reshoring of supply chains and strengthening regional ecosystems as key imperatives for accelerated growth in the years ahead.
German companies understand the idea of ecosystems and the importance of partnerships, but remain cautious about participating in ecosystems. Historically, they have preferred to acquire and lead.
Responses in the EY Global Capital Confidence Barometer seem to bear this out. Only 20% of German executives who participated in the survey elected to answer the question relating to ecosystems. Of those, 90% say they need to define their future role in the ecosystem more clearly, while 73% say they are more open to partnering with the competition to create new ecosystems. However, 84% believe they need to control all key elements in the ecosystem, and 97% say they need to build new skills and processes to operate effectively in their ecosystem.
As German companies prepare for a post-pandemic world, they’ll want to think more broadly about developing and engaging in collaborative ecosystems and partnerships that can help them excel in the areas outside of their core competencies without having to build or buy.