CEO Roundtable: Leading in a Time of Uncertainty

The CEO roundtable at the NYSE gave a select group of leaders the opportunity to candidly discuss their short-term outlooks on growth. Echoing the theme of our seventh annual NYSE Euronext CEO Report—the roundtable brought together CEOs diverse in industry, region and size to share their ideas and strategies amid lingering uncertainties. “The sentiment is, ‘Look, I feel good about my business, but the reality is it’s uncertain,’” summed up Tiger Tyagarajan, president and CEO of Genpact (NYSE: G).

Joining him at the table were Justin Brownhill of The Receivables Exchange, Alexandre Douzet of TheLadders.com, Nicholas Pinchuk of Snap-on (NYSE: SNA), Carley Roney of XO Group (NYSE: XOXO), Glenn Stevens of GAIN Capital (NYSE: GCAP) as well as NYSE Euronext CEO Duncan Niederauer.

“It's been a tale of two economies,” Brownhill contributed. “The large corporations aren't spending, and the small business community is under a double credit crunch. We are hoping that access to capital comes back and that large companies start putting purchase orders out to the small business suppliers again, and start paying more quickly.”

The CEO group went on to exchange key insights into innovation and job creation despite all of the uncertainty. “If you study where the job creation is coming from, it’s those small and medium-sized companies—those that can grow very fast,” said Douzet. “The signs we’re getting for 2012 are pretty positive.”

Roney noted that XO Group’s strategy for innovation is an intense focus on the customer. “If you are completely listening and crowd sourcing in that way, it will force you to innovate,” she said. “If the markets aren't keeping you anxious enough, your own customers will.”

Be sure to look for full coverage of this discussion, including exclusive videos, in the Winter 2012 issue NYSE Magazine, in iPad and online at nysemagazine.com, to be released in January.