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Guest Profile

Bob Moritz
Global Chairman

PwC

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About Bob Moritz

Bob Moritz is Global Chairman of PwC, which spans 155 countries and includes more than 284,000 people. PwC is a professional services network, providing audit, tax, consulting, and deals services around the world, in order to build trust and contribute to productive solutions for the world’s most pressing problems. In his role, Bob leads the international network’s leadership teams, champions diversity and inclusion, sets strategy, and enhances the brand of PwC through quality service to our stakeholders. Bob is also PwC’s representative with IFIAR, GPPC, and other profession-focused organizations to enhance investor confidence and public trust in the capital markets.

 

Prior to taking on the global role, Bob led the US firm of PwC as its Chairman and Senior Partner for seven years.  He has been with PwC his entire career, joining in 1985 and becoming a partner in 1995. He has an Audit and Assurance background, primarily dealing with financial services, banking, and capital markets clients. During the course of his career, Bob spent three years with PwC Japan, working with European and US-based financial services companies operating in Asia.

 

Bob chairs the Global Leadership Council of Generation Unlimited, a UNICEF-affiliated organization which brings together partners from government, multilateral organizations, civil society, and the private sector to help young people around the world reach their potential. Additionally, PwC is a founding member of the UN’s HeforShe 10x10x10 Impact Champions network. Bob is also a trustee of The Conference Board, a member of the Committee Encouraging Corporate Philanthropy, and a director of the SUNY-Oswego College Foundation, his alma mater. 

 

Bob is married and lives just outside of New York City.

Episode Overview

Bob Moritz, Global Chairman of PwC, joins Alberto Lidji to discuss stakeholder capitalism, ESG (environmental, social, governance) and how the corporate world is embracing the sustainability agenda

If you want a front-row seat to see and understand how large corporates are approaching stakeholder capitalism and ESG, this episode is most certainly for you.

 

On 15th June 2021, PwC announced that it will be investing $12bn and creating 100,000 new jobs over the next five years to expand capabilities for clients including in the area of ESG. So, this podcast interview isn’t just theoretical; there’s real consequence to everything you’ll hear in this episode. 

Episode Transcript

This is a transcript of the conversation between Alberto Lidji, host of The Do One Better Podcast and Bob Moritz, Global Chairman of PwC.

Alberto Lidji: Bob Moritz, Global Chairman of PwC, welcome on to The Do One Better Podcast today.

 

Bob Moritz: Alberto, thanks for allowing me to join you here today and I'm looking forward to the conversation.

 

Alberto Lidji: Absolutely. Why don't we start by getting your take on stakeholder capitalism and ESG broadly speaking. 

 

Bob Moritz: Sure. Let's go back to sort of how the world sees this. There's definitely a disconnect or perhaps we've lost the link between economic growth and then the outcomes in the eyes of society at large.

 

You see some of the trends that drive to more haves and have nots, you see income disparity, you see social injustice, you see the elements of climate and other issues around the environment. And that connection that historically, that we've had has been disconnected or less correlated than what we've had in the past.

 

But to your opening comment, Alberto, the concepts of shareholder versus stakeholder, actually I think are a little bit of a falsity. I don't think they're as separate as people believe. And what I think is important to focus on is the old historians and economic theorists. If you read them carefully, they did bring in the concept of stakeholders.

 

It just narrowly ended up with a result focusing on the shareholder. I still think you have some of that today, so let's bring this to life a little bit more so. Three things have fundamentally changed over the last call it decade or two. Number one, the world has become judge and jury. The world sees with much more transparency, a lot more what's happening around the world in places they never would have seen before.

 

The second thing is that voice that they have gets amplified through technology, social media, and otherwise, and third, as a result. They are, society is, a broader and different form of activism. We always talk about activism being financial activists, but we have employee activism, consumer activism, and societal activism, and CEOs need to react to that more so than ever before.

 

Not only for survivability, but also sustainability. And then if they don't react to the expectations and the demand, you've missed the expectations, no different than what you do with your shareholders. So the concepts are very much fundamentally the same. The question is what do organizations do about them?

 

And that's why it's important that people bake into these concepts of I'll call the broader stakeholder expectations. The concepts have to be brought into their risks, their strategy, their reporting, and they've got to endear more trust and they've got to demonstrate more sustained outcomes.

 

Otherwise consumers walk away from them. Employees don't join them or they leave. Investors will walk away and nonetheless shareholders and stakeholders centralized and end up in exactly the same space. It's only a question of timing. 

 

Alberto Lidji: Very, very interesting. Are you getting any skepticism in response to this that you have to overcome?

 

Bob Moritz: There's always going to be skepticism. The world today is full of that when you have the opportunity to bring that voice to the table. So you're never going to get a hundred percent agreement, but the reality is you are seeing much more alignment from various groups around the need to be focused on stakeholders more broadly, and the connectivity and inclusiveness of shareholders being one of the important stakeholders. So that evolution and convergence is very much there. You're seeing and hearing it from CEOs, management teams and the supervisory boards. You're seeing it and hearing it from NGOs, you're seeing it and hearing it actually with institutional investors, just take a look at the amount of money that is now being allocated into ESG related funds or otherwise and they are looking for investible assets. And they are making tougher decisions in terms of where to deploy that capital and to have the biggest return, financial in the short term, sustainable and stakeholder wide over the longterm. So I do believe that the momentum is built, convergence is happening and there's a great deal of momentum to pull other levers of change, to actually get a faster result to change both the steepness of the curve, to move in this direction, as well as the speed to accomplish it. 

 

Alberto Lidji: Right. And where are we with respect to non-financial reporting or ESG reporting? So we have the financial reporting frameworks. That's highly regulated, standardized everybody's on the same page. If we're looking at ESG reporting, that's very much a work in progress. Some people think it's analogous to an exercise in creative writing. Where are we on that? What's the state of affairs. 

 

Bob Moritz: Yeah. So let's go back to a couple of key principles: first and foremost, the whole system needs to change and be much more cognizant of what the world is expecting, included in that is the amount of transparency and the type of reporting that gets done. Why is that? Those stakeholders and yes, shareholders included, want to have the ability to understand what any organization is doing and determine how much progress they are making and how they are comparing against others. Today we have a financial reporting system that's very robust. It's been developed over a century, decades and centuries. It's got controls, measurements, regulation, enforcement, discussions when people inadvertently or intentionally, actually circumvent those requirements. We want that same kind of discipline in the reporting structure in non-financial measures that get you to the stakeholder expectations. Today, we have a number of different organizations that have either tried to define those, report and measure those, or use them in ratings. The problem is you've got a whole bunch of fragmentation. So there is an effort underway by many to bring some of these organizations together to say, let's land a common set of standards. The World Economic Forum, which is one of the institutions that's been trying to be an accelerant to that, is now working with the international standards bodies to get a focus on let's land a global set of standards that all can use and apply with a level of granularity that you're talked about. Landing. That will be hard, but the good news here is that we've got a good baseline of the standards that exist today on some measures. And hopefully we can build on those rather than create something new. The second thing we're trying to do is avoid each country, doing its own thing. If we have different reporting measures by country, we can't get to that compatibility. We can't get to that level of granularity and the stakeholders are not served well. And the last thing is we've got to have trust in those results. This is a way for organizations to demonstrate the outcomes of all the initiatives they've put under play and the impact they're having, and hopefully they could demonstrate the progress they've had and how they compare against other. And they'll be more attractive to shareholders and attractive to employees, attractive to consumers because of that. It's in their best interest to do that. And the world's demanding it at the same time. 

 

The other point that we have to focus on is the fact that we probably have some industry-wide standards and then there's got to be very sector specific standards.

 

Each business is somewhat different and has an impact there. And this has to apply to the public as well as the private companies. Otherwise, we're going to have arbitrage in terms of where capital gets deployed. So it's exciting. It's moving fast. And I think you're going to see a lot of momentum over the next two years. Get to a level setting of the standards for reporting. And hopefully we can then get to the execution on a multiple year journey to enhance that transparency and allow for the stakeholders, inclusive the shareholders, to be the judge and jury with facts rather than anecdotes and stuff. 

 

Alberto Lidji: How confident are you feeling about the opportunities ahead? So we're coming up to 2030 the year of the Sustainable Development Goals  that's only nine years away. Are you feeling optimistic about things? 

 

Bob Moritz: Yeah. So, I am very excited about the opportunity and the momentum that is building and the focus that's happening, and you can point to three things: first, that you've got convergence starting to come together around the reporting standards, which allows for that measurement. Second, is take a look at what some of the institutional investors are doing, not only saying, but doing, and that goes back to where they are spending their time and energy. It's interesting, alberto, if you were sitting down with a CEO, a CFO, or an investor relations organization, within the first five questions, you're getting questions from analysts or investors about social, diversity, inclusion, climate, environment,  good governance. So that momentum and focus for impact is really starting to come to life.

 

And last you are seeing a tremendous uptick in terms of where capital is being deployed. Tougher choices are being made around the impact and putting it into the hands of the right people to have the right impact to hopefully get to the results of the SDGs. So that's why I'm tremendously positive about this.

 

You do have to though get the collective groups to be working more so together. Regulators around the world, exchanges, standard setters, CEOs. And this is where I say the whole system has to change. We can't just pull one lever of change. It's gotta be all the above. So it's not only important for a corporate to think about a change in reporting. It actually has to think about does our strategy embed the concepts in. Do our incentives and compensation schemes reward the right behavior. Is our board regularly checking to make sure that we're moving in that direction, consistent with the expectations. And do we have the right controls and mechanisms in place to get the right quality data.

 

And then at the back end, is a reporting mechanism for the world to see and hear about. So what I mean .By the whole system is looking at, at a corporate level of the entirety. And when I think about the world it's governments, it's corporates, it's communities, it's regulators, standard setters and NGO talking more so about this. 

 

Alberto Lidji: Fascinating stuff. Now, all of these different sectors of society, whether it's the public sector, the civil society, the private sector... what about specific industries? Are you noticing any difference between industries are some industries gung ho and the whole thing and others very apprehensive about it, perhaps?

 

Bob Moritz: Well, I would say it's more consistent across industries. Clearly when you look at the banking, investment and insurance industry, you see more ability to influence, right? They're making tougher choices and they  think about who they underwrite in terms of the insurance policy or the lending that they are doing.

 

So there's a slightly different implication to what I'll call our financial services system in this regard, not only for what they are doing themselves, but how they're interacting with their customers. That's very important. 

 

The second thing that's important to think about is what I'll call the interdependencies. Everybody focuses on the energy, oil and gas industry. For example, as you think about carbon intensity when it comes to climate, but the reality is you also have to go downstream and think about who are the ultimate users of that energy. That's why when you look at climate emissions, you have to look at Scope 1  and Scope 2 which are things you can control.

 

Scope 3 admissions is what are your suppliers, generally speaking, what are your suppliers really focusing on and how much use are you having? So that's where again, our consumer and retail organizations have to have equal focus on these things. So it's important to make sure there is a understanding of the interconnected ecosystem, as well as the connectivity from industry to industry.

 

It's great news. When you look, Alberto, out of the World Economic Forum there's close to 150 CEOs that have now committed to use these metrics holistically. You've got,  if I remember correctly, about 1,500 organizations around the world committing to a net zero commitment and you've got a, a thousand of them go into science-based targets, which comes back to the level of granularity.

 

You've got hundreds and thousands that do transparency reports around people, diversity inclusion, and social justice and social equity. So you're seeing that momentum build and there's a consistency across all the sectors. Then you have to ask yourself a question: Where's the variability within the sectors.

 

Some are enlightened, some are questioning it. Some are jumping on the bandwagon. It's just a question of timing before the world catches up with them. 

 

Alberto Lidji: And do you have clients, presumably coming up to you and saying, look, Bob, where do I start? I'm getting pressure, right. And where do I start with this... give me a hand.

 

Bob Moritz: Yeah, without a doubt. So we do an annual CEO survey,  that CEO survey we've done for 24 years. And it's a great predictor of what's going on in the world and perhaps what that future looks like. We ask, you know, what's your confidence in the economy? What's your confidence to grow yourselves? Where do you see the risks? Where do you see the opportunities? Where would you want to invest? 

 

On the case of, for example, ESG. 65% or 70% of the CEOs say we've got to measure more and report more. Again, that goes to the momentum that's building. The second thing they say is I've got to actually enhance the skill sets I have to achieve my strategy. 70 some odd percent would say I don't have that ability to get the right skills to execute the strategy. And clearly looking ahead, I will need new skill sets to do that. 

 

Third, when it comes to climate, we had a small increase in terms of how important it was -- not surprising because it's been on the agenda for awhile -- what was interesting is the disconnect between how many of them are embedding it in their strategy of their risk assessments. About 60% are not at this point in time. And that's to your point, Alberto, which is, they're not sure what to do granularly in the next year or two. 

 

Many are putting commitments out, which is great, but they're working on the assumption that innovation and entrepreneurship will move them in the direction, the acquisition of new skills and new ideas  will lead to innovation. Innovation will solve for some of the problems that they have today. So there's a belief of what we need to do, and that's where we, PwC, are spending more time thinking about this concept of how do you embed trust and sustained outcomes in your overall agenda. And then how do you deliver against those with conviction and how do you transparently report on that as well. 

 

Alberto Lidji: Yeah. Now, when I'm thinking about the future of ESG and where we're heading, in terms of reporting,  regulations and transparency.  I do have this question in my mind, when we're looking at Europe and we're looking at North America, do we have the risk of divergence at a macro, policy level, is there the risk of divergence? And also if we get a little bit more granular, if I think about corporate chief executives, European chief executives, American chief executives... I would imagine there's some difference there and the sense of urgency and willingness to embrace this. 

 

Bob Moritz: It's clear that the Europeans as  a group, both at the country level, the business level and the regulatory level where  on this issue faster. Regulation has driven them in that regard where you did not have that in the  US. Clearly in the US right now, the current administration is on this issue in a very big way. But I do want to recognize the CEO community and at the state level there was a lot of momentum building already before the new administration came in lieu of perhaps a gap from the federal administration. So I do think that momentum was building, and what you're seeing now is acceleration in the states.

 

The big challenge is how do you make sure that the major G7 countries are looking at this. You can look at some of the announcements that China made recently. You can look at some of the challenges that India has. You really have to think about this over the next decade or two, to say do we have all the countries operating?

 

And it's great to see that, for example, the US and China have to actually come together on this particular topic and say, we collectively can be doing more for the benefit of the world and disregard as it relates to climate.

 

Alberto Lidji: And what about the business community? So you obviously have your finger on the pulse of the business community, and we're seeing the business community getting much more involved. Now it's not just the thing for government or policy makers. And ultimately, I imagine if the business community gets in there. They're the ones who are going to be able to drive incredible change going forward. Right? 

 

Bob Moritz: It is clear that the business community sort of owns it because that's ultimately where the action is. Governments can put rules and regulations in place to try to accelerate the pace of change, and the fairness of that change, such that there's more equality and the NGOs and the other stakeholders can be a voice for change. Right, and demand more change, and they can only do that with facts, to make sure that it is a fact-driven conversation to incent the behavior. And that's where that quasi investment of time leads to activism and accountability. And that's super important.  The other point I want to raise, which I hope we don't miss is we've talked a lot about climate examples. That's a worldwide phenomenon right now. Let's not forget, ESG goes to environment, social and governance, I would say on a societal basis, you clearly see that picking up a lot of momentum in the US in particular.

 

As we think about some of the inclusion issues, the social issues, worldwide we're seeing the issues around skill sets. And we at PWC are spending a lot of time in the area of what is it we can do to help the world enable better skills to be had such that people see the opportunities, both for job and entrepreneurship, but also longer term sustainability.

 

The implications of technologies are very disruptive to job opportunity and job security. So what can we do? What can the business community do? What can governments do to incent the right skill development? COVID-19 has accelerated and expanded and put on steroids the trends we were already seeing, they all came to life very fast. So it's a huge wake up call and coming out of, and we're not out of it yet, out of the pandemic, but starting to think about a light at the end of the tunnel, the question is what do we do around our education systems? What do we do to make sure that people have the opportunity for job security, job opportunity and job advancement.

 

And those are the things where the business community is equally as focused. So it's a broader ESG agenda connected to the SDGs, not necessarily just a climate conversation that's going on these days. 

 

Alberto Lidji: I think that's a really good point because ESG is much more than just climate. So we need to make sure that we're focusing on all the aspects of ESG, not just climate.

 

Tell me, so you joined PwC back in 1985. Did you ever think in your wildest dreams when you were walking through the doors of PwC for the first time that you'd be here over 30 years later running the show? 

 

Bob Moritz: So, I came to PwC thinking I was going to get two years' experience and then leave and go do something else. I never thought I was actually gonna stay as many years as I had and have the wonderful opportunity to get the roles that I did. And I was able to achieve my success because of the teams around me and the sponsorship that people gave me. And I had a chance to grow up in our audit business and financial services. I had a chance to lead those groups and then go overseas into Asia for a couple of years. And I had a chance to learn quite a bit from my clients that I served. And the reason we, PwC and I, and others and other leaders in the organization are on this is because we're trying to be responsive to what our clients need, what the world needs.

 

A couple of years ago, we looked at these mega trends. And we asked ourselves some strategic questions. How do we remain relevant? Where can we grow and add value to the world that we're living in? How should we do it differently and how should we deliver that differently? And where should we be investing?

 

It caused us to then to take a hard look at our own purpose. Why do we exist? And in that regard, we actually crowdsourced our purpose. We went to our people at time, 225,000 people, what is the world need and what does PwC good at? And that ultimately got us to, how do we help enable trust and solve important problems?

 

And as we've evolved that thinking, and as we've listened carefully to all stakeholders, not just our clients, because we are a business and we have a responsibility to listen to those stakeholders and then determine what we do. We then chose the path that we're on today and that's good for us to be able to serve our clients. That's good for us to be able to demonstrate our purpose and it comes to life and all that we do. It also is a great opportunity for our people to contribute as well. We have [around] 290,000 people around the world, as you said, at the start... they want to contribute to society. And we have the opportunity to engage with them, to both educate them, but also give them opportunities to contribute. Not only in the work they do day in and day out, but what they do outside of work. And that's why it's so important as we become a talent magnet to the longer-term needs and objectives that we have in the brand at PwC just like with corporates though, Alberto, we PwC have to not only  talk the talk, we need to walk the walk.

 

So we had to put our own commitments out there. We put our own net zero commitment to be net zero in 2030, we deployed a $3 billion investment in what we call  "New World. New Skils" How do we upskill our own people? How do we help our clients upskill their people? And how would you help society upskill theirs?

 

And we associated ourselves with UNICEF and an organization called Gen U that's focused on connecting people, bringing content and education to people, incenting entrepreneurship, because you've got to have supply of better skilled people, but you better have jobs for them to go do. And last but not least how do you empower the youth, which are our future leaders.

 

And that was an organization we thought was really important. So these are some of the examples of the things we have to do ourselves. Our people expect us to do it. Our clients want to see us do it. And we're our own use case when we talk to others and exemplify the role modeling, hopefully, what we can actually bring to the table.

 

Alberto Lidji: When did you start noticing that things were shifting, maybe what you learned at university and what you learned when you were in your first stint at PwC... and the conversation you and I are having right now, I don't know if 20, 30 years ago you would have... if you had heard yourself speaking today you probably maybe wouldn't even recognize who you're talking with, right?

 

Bob Moritz: Absolutely not.  I would say there were probably three big inflection points for me personally. The first one was when I was about five years into my career and I was over in Asia. It just give me a different perspective of the world and the cultural differences and the global acumen that we all need to have. Especially, even though we have fragmentation and nationalism and protectionism, the world is more so connected than ever before. So to understand a culture in China, Japan, Korea vs Middle East, vs India vs the UK vs the US is hugely important. That was a big inflection point. The second inflection point was... I had an opportunity to go into our own human capital organization for a year or two. And that gave me a different side of the business, which is the human side of our business, which got me onto the concepts of humanity and different people needs, including diversity. The third was when I was interacting with some of our major clients as a client service partner, and, and listening carefully to the world and what's happened.

 

And then the last piece I would say was probably the implications of technology, particularly over the last decade. The implications of  cloud, computer technology, data, data requirements, and the like, it just causes you to redefine businesses and transform and disrupt businesses. And those couple of things were big inflection points.

 

And then the last one was in the leadership roles. Your opportunity here is to serve and make people better. Your opportunity is to develop better leaders, and that's why at PwC we're trying to not only do that for ourselves, but also how can we bring that to the table externally, because we need more 'leadership' globally to drive the initiatives and the ideas that we were just talking about over the past 25 minutes. 

 

Alberto Lidji: So you mentioned the phrase talent magnet a little bit earlier. And I'm curious about that, from a recruitment perspective, what's that talent pool looking like? I imagine the folks coming out of business schools and universities... incredibly different mindset than what you would have seen 15, 20 years ago, right? 

 

Bob Moritz: Look, so when I joined PwC way back when, I was interested in the job and a paycheck, right.   I had students, I had student loans to pay down and I know many people do today. That's a big challenge. But today, number one,  the students coming off of campus -- and we get a large majority of our people from campus... it's not the only source -- they're much more worldly. They have that global acumen. I never had a passport when I went to university. Many have not only been around the world, but they're interacting because there's so many foreign students on their campus that they may be in. So they are much more globally astute than I ever was. Second, they're much more attuned to the issue. Social media allows you to see everything going on in the world. Back when I was in school, or maybe in the early parts of my career, if something happened in Nigeria, I might not ever know about it.

 

Today, all you have to do is look at your social media feed and you're seeing it live, right. And no matter where you may be in... it comes in an instant, as opposed to in the past, it might have taken you a month to get it in a newspaper. So they're much more worldly as well. And the other piece here are some of the academic studies we found. If they see an organization that has and demonstrates the values that they have. And see leadership stepping up to be a role model and a force for change. They are more likely to want to come. They are probably more likely to contribute and they are much more productive, effective, and efficient in that contribution. And as a result, you'll get more loyalty or loyalty gets more opportunity for them, as well as more opportunity for the organization. So as we think about this, are people understanding our strategy and why not just the what, but the why, gets them more willing to dedicate time and energy. And you get that productivity, that enhancement, that better service and that better consumption... that consumer or client experience, you get a better people experience as well.

 

Alberto Lidji: Yeah. Presumably some of this younger talent coming in, they're the ones telling you, 'I'd like to deploy some of my skills here for higher purpose, for something better, for something different'... 

 

Bob Moritz: For sure. And what we want to be doing is giving them the opportunity to do that. You want to first describe, well, let's remember our day jobs actually do deliver against trust and sustained outcomes, and we are helping solve important problems. It's not just the separate initiatives about upskilling or a separate initiative about a diversity or a separate issue around helping in a natural disaster. The day job is equally important to that purpose as is the philanthropic things that we do as well. But you do want to give them the opportunity to opt in and you do want to give them the time to do that.

 

And if they're able to then do those things, they're much more loyal, much more productive. And I think everybody ends up with a win-win.

 

Alberto Lidji: I'm sure you're learning quite a bit from them as well. Right? I mean, some of them are coming through the door with some ideas that you're like, right, ok…

 

Bob Moritz: We have to acknowledge that we don't know at all. One of the things of a good leader is to surround your self with the right people... doing that regardless of tenure and age and job description is really important. And the concept of reverse mentoring is another concept that I hope a lot of organizations leverage.

 

We probably do that with our kids. I would hope we would do that with our next generation employees and next generation leaders as well.

 

Alberto Lidji: Indeed. And let me ask you on the stakeholder capitalism, is there anything that I haven't asked you, that's there, that you think you really need to get out there because people need to be aware of it? 

 

Bob Moritz: So look, I think the thing I would ask is that activism... demanding change, requires two things. First, you gotta make sure you're educated and have the facts. Second is to engage respectfully, and to have the deliberations of being open-minded to what you're looking to achieve and why. And this is why I think it's really important to, for the business community, and for that matter governments, to talk about not only what they're doing, but why they're doing it. Everybody sees the what, right, with social media and transparency, but not many spend the time to understand why did you make that decision? Why do you have that goal? Why did you take that action? And I think the more we engage and have the collective conversation, the more progress and understanding  we can have rather than the fighting that may come with the absolutes of yay or nay. And I think that's a really important point to think about as you think about progression. Progression is really important here as I said. Comparability and progression, deploying capital into the right organizations... let's make sure it's fact-based not anecdotal based. Let's make sure it's data-driven not storytelling, which clearly anybody can do, but again, follow the facts and then let's make sure we really understand the choices, the tough choices people need to make. 

 

Today is my choice to go hire a lot more people, because I think the business'  opportunities are there or is my choice to actually go spend that money in carbon reduction techniques. I probably need to do both. Now someone's going to argue, I should do more of one vs the other, but understand what choices we're making  and corporates and governments have to do more of that as we look ahead.

 

Alberto Lidji: On that point of choices, by the way, is it more difficult to make choices? It's the clarity of thought perhaps blurred a little bit when the objective isn't that singularity of let's make money short term. 

 

Bob Moritz: Yeah. The, the decision-making process has become much more complex for leaders, no matter what type of job you're in. First you have many more stakeholders than ever before.  Second, the demands of those stakeholders are at times in conflict with one another. And third, they... because of the voice they have and the ability to amplify with social media or otherwise, they can be judged very quickly and you can lose control of that narrative.

 

So thinking about the multiplicity and complexity of a decision from all angles becomes really important. And that becomes a challenge of do you have the right leaders and the right skills and experiences when you're making these decisions to bring that perspective to the table? 

 

CEOs have a responsibility to engage with those stakeholders and bring all of that into the room. Government officials, same thing. And so it's really important for that two way dialogue to happen in multiple ways before making that decision, to think about the decision itself and the many degrees of downstream implications to them... and the risks and reward. 

 

Now that shouldn't paralyze organizations or people, right? Sometimes you can get overstimulated and over paralyzed. I'm afraid to take that risk. No, you actually have to take a risk and adjust. So the agile method, meaning make a decision, learn fast, fail, fast, adjust fast is really important. And that's again, a new skill set I think people have to be conscious of, to minimize the downside risk of a bad decision or decision because the environment's changed so rapidly.

 

And that today is what's happening in the world. Environments are changing so rapidly. You've got to keep the pace. So a decision I made yesterday, may not be as relevant tomorrow. It's okay to come off of yesterday's decision. And that's the speed and complexity of the issue, which makes decision-making in leadership much  harder than ever before.

 

Alberto Lidji: Excellent. Tell me, so what's that key takeaway you'd love for the audience to keep in mind after they finish listening to today's episode?

 

Bob Moritz: Yeah. I'd say that the key takeaway here is that there is opportunity for change. And I come to the table, luckily enough, seeing a lot of different things in the role that I have the privilege of having... the momentum is there, but the challenge is how do we expand and increase the momentum and how do we increase the speed and the trajectory for change.

 

And I think that's where right now we are, the momentum is definitely building our choices. As a society is how do we get that faster? And get the curve even higher to get to some of the opportunities that exist for us. This world is definitely demanding right now and complex right now, and full of haves and have nots.

 

I think there is an opportunity for a lot more optimism, but I understand the need. And perhaps many that say there's a lot more half empty than have full. we have a choice to make. You have a choice to make in terms of which side of that coin you're on.  You have a choice to be an element of change and drive that change. And that's why the concept of getting more trust and sustained outcomes into the message is really important for PwC and the organizations we're associated with. 

 

Alberto Lidji: Wonderful. Well, Bob, thanks very much for joining us today on The Do One Better Podcast, it's been great hosting you and talking all things ESG and stakeholder capitalism. Learning about the work at PwC and the initiatives you have going on. And you're thinking more broadly on ESG and sustainability. It's wonderful that you were able to take time out of your busy schedule and I appreciate it very much. Thanks. 

 

Bob Moritz: Happy to be here. Thanks very much for hosting this session today.