Talent Management Takes Back Seat to Financial Concerns

February 19, 2009 (PLANSPONSOR.com) - Business leaders around the world rank financial pressures to cut costs and rapid market decline as their toughest business challenges, with talent management falling to last on their list.

Personnel Decisions International’s (PDI) new Pulse on Leaders global study showed a dramatic shift in leaders’ top business challenges. According to a press release, only 5% of respondents to the current study said “loss of leaders in key areas or insufficient talent to quickly adapt to change” was a business challenge – in stark contrast to a study conducted by PDI from 2006 to 2008 in which company leaders said top-line growth and talent management were the key issues.

Meanwhile, 83% of leaders surveyed cited “financial pressures to cut costs” as a top business challenge, and 54% cited the “rapid market decline.”

Other survey results, according to the press release, included:

  • Competitive threats (23%),
  • Access to capital (23%),
  • Realizing the full potential of a recent merger or acquisition (16%),
  • Taking advantage of pockets of rapid market growth (16%), and
  • Leveraging global expansion investments (13%).

“The best executives are focusing on both short-term challenges and long-term strategies. They recognize the need for key talent that can help the company get through current tough times, while also setting the stage for a competitive advantage once the recession ends,” advised Marc Sokol, senior vice president and global practice leader, PDI, in the press release.