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Entries in Leadership (12)


The Results Are In: Does Your Company Have an Employee Development Program?

In our January Question of the Month, we asked if your company has a comprehensive employee development program. The encouraging results show that approximately 63% of respondents have a program in place to help or at least encourage their employees to reach their development goals.

The full breakdown:

  • For 24% of respondents, employee development is an integral part of their culture
  • 20% offer employee development opportunities, but only on an as needed basis
  • 19% of companies encourage employee development, but don’t officially support it
  • And, 38% have no employee development initiatives in place

During the past few years since the recession, an alarming situation has emerged in the workforce. Currently, there are more than 12 million unemployed workers in the U.S. at the same time many businesses across all industries are having a difficult time filling open positions. So, where’s the disconnect? Studies have shown that the problem may lie with fewer numbers of available skilled workers.

The workplace is constantly evolving, so in order to ensure your business stays productive, it’s necessary for your workers to evolve at the same pace. Companies that place an emphasis on training and development programs for their employees are essentially helping to creating their own private talent pool. Focusing on developing younger or less-skilled workers will help ensure you have easier access to talent to fill high-skilled job vacancies. And by creating comprehensive leadership development paths, you take important steps toward securing the future of the company.

Employee training and development is a vital part of building a stable, productive, and successful business. And as the workforce continues to become more technologically advanced, the need for highly skilled workers is only going to increase. Staying ahead of the curve and making moves to fight the brewing talent war will be key to survival in the long run.

How do you develop new employees and prepare them to take on larger roles within your company? Let us know in the comment section below.

by Jared Brox on February 19, 2013 in Executive InsightsLeadership and ManagementSurveys, Polls, and Infographics



CareerBuilder: “One in Five Companies Have Replaced Workers with Technology”

According to a recent survey by CareerBuilder and Economic Modeling Specialists International (EMSI), 21% of companies say they have replaced employees with automation. The survey also points out that while an increased emphasis on technology has eliminated some jobs, in many instances, more higher-skilled jobs were created as a result.

Check out the full report.

Has your company “automated” its workforce? If so, what was the effect on hiring? Let us know in the comments section below.


March Madness: We Have a Champion

From the Elite Eight and the Final Four all the way to the final match, the road to the March Madness Leadership Championship has been long. There have been ups and downs, shoe-ins and upsets, but after three rounds, the voters have decided. And the winner is … Coaching!

With 89% of votes, Coaching leadership style beat out Laissez-faire to take the tournament win. Coaching is a one-on-one leadership approach that is focused on employee development and growing workers into top talent. Its strength is to help team members meet their goals within the company and personal career. To view the entire scouting report, view March Madness Leadership Bracketology.

Coach Your Way to Success

Companies have come to realize the importance of employee development on the overall health and success of their businesses. However, according to a study by Towers Watson, only 58% of companies have an employee development program in place. Workers are expected to grow and advance professionally, and if they aren’t being coached at their current position, they may soon leave for greener pastures. In their 2013 Candidate Behavior Survey, CareerBuilder found that 77% of full-time employed workers are either open to or actively looking for new job opportunities. The more engaged you are with your employees’ development, the more engaged your employees will be at work.

The Power of Mentoring 

Leaders who are successful in life have often been the result of mentorships. In fact, according to American Society of Training and Development (ASTD), 75% of executives say mentoring was key to their success. Whether having one-on-one meetings with each employee or having a group discussion on goals and training, mentoring goes a long way in developing top talent. ASTD also claims that 35% of employees who aren’t mentored search for new jobs within the following year. So, for your company to keep its innovation and relevance in its market, it’s vital to lean heavily on the Coaching leadership style.

Well-balanced Machine

Although Coaching won the March Madness Leadership Tournament, the other leadership styles have their place at the office. For instance, sometimes it’s imperative to utilize an Autocratic style in times of crisis. Or when your company is at the cusp of new beginnings, it is essential to have a Visionary leader. The best leaders know when to adapt to certain situations, so keeping all eight of these leadership styles in your management quiver will help you be ready for any possible scenario that may come up. Remember, don’t be the leader you want to be, be the leader your company needs you to be.

Which leadership style do you use most often? How have you developed your employees? Let us know in the comments section below!


How You Can Win Over Millennials

Retail sales are what drive the economy, and with the largest generation since Baby Boomers in the workforce, the spenders of the future are changing how businesses target consumers.

In a recent article on QUARTZ, author Venkatesh Bala explains that businesses can reach Millennials – they just need to be willing to adapt and be innovative. And with $600 billion in Millennial spending at stake, it’s more crucial than ever to think outside the box. Follow the link below to learn steps you can take to appeal to this generation:

How even the stodgiest retailer can win over millennials

How do you think Millennials have affected the retail and sales industry? Are there any specific strategies you have for reaching this demographic? Let us know in the comments section below!


5 Characteristics of Successful People and a Few Key Questions You Should Ask Yourself

Who are the most successful people in business today? You could probably build quite an extensive list of innovators and visionaries who have built impressive careers and truly made a mark on the world. Even on a smaller scale in your local business and personal networks, there are probably people who just seem to have superior insight and always catch all the breaks.

Can you chalk it up to just pure, dumb luck? Or being in the right place at the right time? Sometimes, maybe, but if you look deeper, you‘ll likely notice a few key characteristics highly successful people seem to share. And the best part – those characteristics aren’t unattainable. You may just need to ask yourself a few key questions.

Successful people have an insatiable thirst for knowledge.
Albert Einstein said, “Intellectual growth should commence at birth and cease only at death.” Highly successful people have a predisposition for curiosity – and they’re willing to go to great lengths to satisfy it. From reading the latest business books, attending seminars and workshops, or seeking out a subject matter expert, successful people are forever on a quest to build their knowledge base.

Quench your thirst by asking yourself:

  • Who are the knowledge leaders in my industry and how can I connect with them?
  • Who are the people in my own business or personal networks I may be able to build a mentoring relationship with?
  • To what length am I willing or able to go to build my knowledge base (i.e. advanced education, getting more involved in professional organizations, etc.)?

Successful people have an unshakable system of moral and ethical codes.
Just as many companies have a set of core values that serve as guidelines for the way they do business, highly successful people have a set of core values that govern their own personal conduct. And they refuse to stray from them – even when an alternative course of action seems easier in the short run.

Stay true blue by asking yourself:

  • What is my personal mission statement?
  • What are some moral/ethical issues I have confronted in the past and how did I respond? How would I do it differently if given the chance?
  • How will other key stakeholders be affected by my actions or decisions in the short-term? In the long-term?

Successful people are unapologetically passionate.
Driven by passion, successful people don’t view their work as something they have to do; rather it’s something they get to do. And it’s that drive that often makes them a formidable competitor. Success, at its core, is driven by passion. Passionate people are focused, steadfast, and often very stubborn.

Feed your passion by asking yourself:

  • Is my job something I would do even if I weren’t being paid to do it?
  • What are the biggest influences that have defined my career path (i.e. family, salary, work-life balance, etc.)?
  • What are some of my perceived constraints, both personal and professional, and am I willing or able to take steps to overcome them?

Successful people prefer the road less traveled.
Big risks often come with big rewards. Successful people know this fact and rarely shy away from an opportunity to blaze a new trail. Some of history’s greatest achievements and innovations are due to people who weren’t afraid to take a chance on a big idea. And if you were to look at the path they took to success, you’d likely see a pattern of consistently pushing the limits along the way.

Step out on a limb by asking yourself:

  • What are some of the biggest risks I’ve taken and what factors – both positive and negative – could have affected the outcome?
  • What can I truly gain from taking a leap of faith? Am I taking a risk for the right reasons?
  • Are there significant consequences to not taking a particular risk?

Successful people have failed, and will fail again.
Renowned author and motivational speaker Zig Ziglar said, “If you learn from defeat, you haven’t really lost.” It’s sage advice that may as well be declared the official mantra of highly successful people. Not only do they acknowledge that they have failed, but they also know it could – and probably will – happen again. The difference – highly successful people take the lessons they’ve learned from past failures to heart, learn from it, and are thus better prepared to deal with it in the future.

Get back up on the horse by asking yourself:

  • Now that I’ve learned what not to do, what are my immediate next steps? Then, how do I adjust my tactics for long-term success?
  • What scares me most about failure? Is it a truly rational or legitimate fear, or is it all in my head?
  • Looking back on some times in the past when I’ve failed, at any point did the world end?

This is by no means a definitive list.
Everyone’s journey toward success is different and there are many more questions that should be asked along the way. This piece is only meant to plant the seed and start a conversation. What are some other important characteristics you have found to be vital to success? What are some other questions you should ask yourself to ensure you’re heading down the right path? Let us know in the comments section below.