Business & Talent. Aligned.

How you manage talent spells the difference between success and failure. To gain a competitive edge, leaders must be prepared to address shifting economic, social and demographic trends that impact workforce performance. Stay informed with research, insights and advice from our leading industry experts. The world of work is changing. Is your company ready?

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

The Factors that Lead to Leadership Failure

Both HR professionals and CEOs agree that Failing to Build Relationships and a Team Environment and A Mismatch with Corporate Culture are the factors most likely to lead to a leader’s derailment.

Understanding the factors that most commonly influence leadership failure will inform your talent strategy and ensure leadership development is on target to deliver needed results. Business growth potential depends on the quality of talent, as does competitive differentiation.
Leadership turnover for non-performance or other leadership dissatisfaction issues continues to be higher than planned, especially since choices regarding senior leadership could be considered some of the most important corporate decisions a company can make.

To gain some insight as to possible sources of succession risk factors, we conducted research in partnership with Chally Group to identify the factors believed to contribute most to the failure of senior leaders in their organizations. The top 10 were as follows:

  1. Fails to Build Relationships and a Team Environment
  2. A Mismatch for the Corporate Culture
  3. Failure to Deliver Acceptable Results
  4. Unable to Win Company Support
  5. Lack of Appropriate Training
  6. Egotistical
  7. Lack of Vision
  8. Not Flexible
  9. Poor Management Skills
  10. Poor Communication

The costs associated with failure (at worst) or ineffective executive transitions are high, and lack of adequate support for talent during crucial periods can have long-term negative impacts for both leaders and the organization. This data only hints of what is to come. When considering the evolving workforce and the increasing importance of engagement on organizational transformation, high performance and productivity, the leader’s role becomes the organization’s greatest catalyst for success. Leaders need to be supported to fully understand the impact of their efforts and, in some cases, lack thereof. Leadership behaviors directly influence employee engagement levels.

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Hiring Managers Say LinkedIn Delivers Candidates

LinkedIn is the top networking site used by North American companies to find job candidates, according to a global survey by Right Management. More than 2,000 internal and external recruiters, human resource executives and hiring managers from 17 countries representing more than 20 industry sectors participated in the Right Management survey.

LinkedIn was reported as useful for sourcing candidates by 93% of the respondents in the U.S. and Canada. Although it trails LinkedIn in North America, Facebook is dominant among European and Asian employers.

Networking Sites as Source of Job Candidates
(Percentage that said site was “useful”)

North America
Asia Pacific

Most people tend to think of social or professional networking sites just as job hunting tools. But career transition professionals are well aware that nearly all employers search these sites for possible job candidates. Our survey, in fact, says that nine out of ten large organizations in North America find at least one of these sites useful. It’s also evident companies consult more than one site when seeking suitable people for openings.

In addition to the top three networking sites, several were also found useful by respondents, including Peoplenjobs, Plaxo, Scout, Viadeo and Xing.

Although nearly all employers today use networking sites as a sourcing method, it is only one among several. Number-one is job postings on the company website followed closely by referrals from company employees. Third are ads in printed media and on job boards followed by informational interviews and staffing agencies.

Are you active on LinkedIn?

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Multiple Job Hopping Hurdles

New research from Right Management found that prospective employers in North America are more likely to have reservations about a candidate’s multiple past jobs than companies in any other part of the world.

Participating in the survey were more than 2,000 internal and external recruiters, human resource executives and hiring managers from 17 countries representing more than 20 industry sectors. The survey explored trends in recruitment as well as factors that influence hiring decisions.

In many cases there were just marginal differences among North American, European or Asian respondents. But when it came to multiple jobs we found statistically significant differences, with Canada and the U.S. most resistant to candidates that come across as job hoppers. That was a surprise since we figured American and Canadian managers were more aware than most of the job market turmoil of the past decade or more.

Hiring Implications for a Candidate with Multiple Jobs
(Percentage of respondents expressing reservations)
  • 57% North America
  • 50% Asia Pacific
  • 38% Europe
  • 50% Global average

Having numerous former positions should not by itself disqualify a job candidate. Certainly many job changes would have to be explained if the individual gets to the interview. Indeed, 41% of respondents globally said they would not regard multiple jobs negatively if the overall experience is relevant to the position. Other respondents would take into account whether the candidate is in the early or middle career stage in which case frequent job changes are more common.

In a downturned economy it is common for people to take on project and temporary work. And with sizeable growth of contract and temporary employees anticipated in the next five years (see next page), candidates with experience in multiple jobs is a reality to which hiring managers will need to adjust.

Do you have reservations about hiring candidates who impress as job-hoppers?

Monday, November 21, 2011

Employee Turnover Expected to Rise in Next Five Years

Employee turnover is expected to increase worldwide during the next five years, according to a global survey we at Right Management recently conducted with more than 2,000 internal and external recruiters, human resource executives and hiring managers from 17 countries. Only 14% of respondents globally anticipated a decrease in employee turnover.

Half the survey respondents globally expect higher turnover. About a third foresee no change, and a minority a decrease…all of which points to greater turnover than organizations have been used to dealing with in the past decade.

Expectations of Higher Turnover in Next Five Years
(Percentage anticipating slight or significant increase)

  • 59% North America
  • 58% Asia Pacific
  • 41% Europe
  • 49% Global Average

There’s no such thing as typical or average turnover. Turnover varies widely from industry to industry. Moreover, some turnover is healthy, but high turnover is a top concern for all organizations everywhere. Yet, unless current expectations are wrong, most employers are soon going to have to cope with more loss of talent and know-how, greater recruitment and training costs, and all the turmoil entailed with people leaving and waiting for their replacement. And aside from the tangible costs, organizations may lose business opportunities as well as momentum, and the constant departures undermine the trust and engagement of remaining workers.

Employers really need to make greater efforts at identifying and retaining key contributors. Even high turnover may be manageable if an employer is able to keep most of the best workers.

Are you focused on retaining your top-performers?

Friday, November 18, 2011

Tuning in to Employees’ Top Priorities

Despite workplace pressures and slow growth for compensation, greater opportunity for career advancement is the number one priority sought by employees in their next position. Right Management polled 561 North American workers via an online survey and asked:

What is your highest priority in your next position?
  • 27% Greater opportunity for advancement
  • 21% Better management team
  • 21% More flexible work environment
  • 17% Better compensation
  • 14% Less work pressure

We posed a classic question to today’s workers, what they’re really looking for in their next job. We wondered if higher comp would top the list, or perhaps less workplace stress, but we found that opportunity for advancement is number one. That tells us that despite all the workplace complaints we hear most employees are still highly motivated about their own development and careers.

Higher compensation and less work pressure trailed other concerns including quality of management. The second highest priority among respondents is a better management team, which may mean either more competent leaders or more considerate bosses, a finding that’s common in a workplace poll such as this. This is a variant of the truism that people quit their bosses, not their companies, and it’s a key lesson for all organizations when there’s strong competition to attract and retain quality talent.

But senior management’s main interest ought to be how to engage employees during a weak economy. The most recent Manpower Employment Outlook Survey is for continued sluggish hiring across most industries. Employee turnover has been remarkably slow for the past two years, and everyone is itching for new horizons. In fact, many workers feel trapped in their current situation. Now that’s bad for everyone concerned and the savvy employer will make strenuous efforts to vary people’s tasks and responsibilities, to shuffle work teams, to do cross-team training…to do whatever is needed to demonstrate real commitment to career development and to counter a pervasive sense of career stagnation among their employees.

Some organizations are surely on top of the problem, but I’m afraid too many aren’t. Are you tuned in to what your employees want from you most?