The Best Way to Identify and Develop Leaders

By Leigh Branham

Leadership is a critical issue for every organization because every organization needs leaders, and because leaders have potential for creating great harm or great good.

And yet, according to a recent Conference Board study, only a third of corporate officers believe their companies have the leaders they need to successfully pursue business opportunities. About the same percentage say they are effective at identifying future leaders.

On top of this unsettling news, we must also face up to the looming demographic situation by the year 2010 the 35-to-44 age group from which most organizations typically select their leaders will decline 18 percent.

And there's one more thing we cannot ignore the reality that leadership in 2003 has become even more challenging with the constant acceleration of the pace of change, superheated competition, heightened pressure from boards and financial markets, the impending return of the war for talent, and rising generations of workers who require more flexible and involving leadership styles.

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