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Leadership Development Still Keeping Employers Awake

March 7, 2005
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For the third straight year, developing potential leaders is the No. 1 management challenge of businesses, according to a survey by the Ken Blanchard Cos.

Blanchard surveyed 1,200 executives in workforce management. Fifty-eight percent listed leadership development as a top management challenge. The next most pressing issues included selecting and retaining key talent (53 percent listed this as a top challenge); reducing costs (50 percent); creating an engaged workforce (48 percent); customer loyalty (41 percent); company flexibility/responsiveness (35 percent); succession planning (34 percent); and increasing innovation (32 percent).

Business in 2010
A separate study of 4,018 senior executives around the world shows that identifying and acquiring talent is a top human resources concern of private-sector companies as they look ahead to the next five years. The study was conducted by the Economist Intelligence Unit and sponsored by SAP.

One reason why companies are concerned about keeping key employees is that they hold the organization’s intellectual property. Companies surveyed were more concerned about losing their expertise to competitors when people quit than they were about hackers breaking into their data or about competitors challenging their patents.

Public-sector employers, meanwhile, said that adapting their workforces to the rapid pace of technological change was their top human resources challenge.

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