A growing tension between the need to develop leaders with global experience and the resistance among younger executives to move to a different city for advancement. We aren’t developing enough people with a global outlook and experience fast enough. Many executives say their companies had turned to “buying” outside talent because leadership development hadn’t happened quickly enough inside their companies.
70 per cent of key leadership must come from within. That is the goal of an organization but they are millions of miles from it opines one leader. In key leadership jobs, we need industry experience. From the bottom up, we don’t have enough programs in place to make that happen.
The current leaders’ failure to provide more people with cross-functional training and development opportunities was making it difficult to ensure that the pool of future leaders would be large enough. One commonly cited roadblock for cross-company employee development was the reluctance of managers to let go of great talent when the structure of their incentives rewards only unit achievement.
The issue of sharing talent across organisational boundaries comes up again and no CEO within the same group would like to part with the talented people he has. The CEO could never overcome the fact that this was a siloed organisation with walls thicker than the Great Wall of China. Eventually, the organisation was “blown up, and cross-unit development plans were put in place. But people still find ways to perpetuate the old order. And everyone holds their cards so close to their vest because they don’t want to give up valuable intellectual assets to the people they compete with. The involvement of the CEO was key in getting a talent development program working.
The role of training and development in retention surfaced many times. Loyalty was a word that some executives thought had disappeared after the repeated layoffs and reorganisations of the past decades. But turnovers are often costly and disruptive. And at a time when critical knowledge is leaving the corporation with the retirement of the baby boomers, there is growing talk among executives about the value of allegiance.
We shouldn’t promise a lifetime employment guarantee in this job. But when we invest in people and their development not just the skills they need right now to get a job done we’ve found we’re getting return on our investment, both short term and long term. And if they leave, we’ve learned that often they will come back.
Younger workers want to know when they walk in the door, how are you going to invest in me? What will you do to develop me individually? And if that doesn’t happen, they are more inclined to walk out the door.
The role of culture in employee retention and how culture creates the organisational “glue” as their companies expand, shift strategies, and adapt to new technologies.
A company cannot be what it was 10 years ago. Management has to create a kind of mosaic that integrates the history of the company with the ideas and skills of new people coming in. We have to focus on both continuity and change. To stay competitive, organisations need to build managers who can deal with and manage change effectively.
In a high powered conference almost all executives agreed that tying recruitment, development and retention initiatives to business strategy was critical to the success of their organisations. But few leaders said they were satisfied that their organisations had all the programs and tools in place to help them meet talent demands in the current rapid-cycle, global economy.
There was strong agreement among executives that former development processes will not meet the challenges that face corporations today. The time-honored, work up through the ranks and assignments methods are no longer enough. The need for new talent, new leaders and new competencies on a global basis is too great. And younger, high-potential employees display little patience for the old “do as I say” rules and process for advancement. Forget telling these people to move, take a rotation for five to 10 years, work really hard, and there will be a payoff someday.
Most executives described themselves as engaged in “transformation efforts” within their companies, as well as responding to the challenges brought on by acquisitions, reorganisation and global expansion. As they struggle with integrating new employees, new technologies and new ideas into established cultures, many came to see change management as an important part of their jobs.
Change is a key theme in a manager’s profession, and some believe it’s the whole theme. A higher level manager’s job is to build ma¬nagers who can deal with and manage change effectively.–