This is a basic question I keep asking my CEO clients and I have done so for several decades. What keeps you awake at night?

It’s interesting to note that CEOs of medium to large companies (1000+ employees) are usually pre-occupied with finding solutions for the same 4 or 5 problems.

In 2013 the top five CEO problems were:

1. innovation and creating new customers

2. getting and keeping people engaged in their work

3. global uncertainty and the unexpected

4. shareholder returns and capital issues

5. global expansion and growth.

These show a mix of the macro business environment which a CEO does not control, and company-specific challenges that require thoughtful CEO solutions with better strategic allocation of resources.