Mobility: Global Assignment to Leadership Pipeline

“Leadership pipeline.” It’s a term that conjures up a mental picture of men and women shuttling through multiple channels that lead, ultimately, to fewer, more select positions.

In actuality, developing future influencers is less pipe-like and more leader-focused!

Employers know that global assignments build leaders, and in a globalized world, weaving such experience into their workforces is an imperative for growth.

In the Worldwide ERC report, The Perfect Storm: Talent Mobility Leaders Decode the Future, Mark Frederick, PhD, Global Talent Management Consulting points out that adults learn best experientially, and a mobility experience presents an excellent learning and development opportunity.

He notes that in the current business environment, which business analysts describe with the acronym “VUCA” (volatile, uncertain, complex and ambiguous), international experience is an especially valuable teacher. VUCA attributes are heightened when employees are working in another country and culture; consequently, global assignments help develop leaders with the skills to cope in a VUCA business place.

Because so many younger professionals crave global experience in their work, companies can leverage that preference to boost their recruiting and retention initiatives, creating a career path for employees and a leadership conduit for the company at the same time. There’s a hurdle, though.

Related: Mobility Account Management: New and Next

Preparing for Industry 4.0

The 2018 Deloitte Millennial Survey reveals a few concerns for employers who are looking to this group to fill future leadership ranks. One issue: Millennials want employers to more aggressively prepare their organizations and employees for the changes that Industry 4.0 is effecting. In addition, millennials’ opinions about business’ motivations and ethics, which had trended up the past two years, retreated dramatically this year, as did their sense of loyalty. Adding to the projected attrition is the draw of the gig economy as an alternative or adjunct to their jobs.

The report notes that among millennials, 43% envision leaving their jobs within two years; only 28% seek to stay beyond five years. The picture is even bleaker for Gen Z: 61% said they would leave within two years if given the choice. Younger workers need to be able to see down the road and understand the positives that come with company loyalty – and one of those is leadership development.

Employers who invest in tomorrow’s leaders will help employees invest in tomorrow’s companies. The group that has been viewed as future leaders and rising stars are growing up, says Mark Lozano SCRP, GMS, 2018 Worldwide ERC® Chairman, who notes that “They don’t want to move just because the company wants them to and because it’s good for their career— they want something in addition to that.” It’s a good time, says Deloitte, for employers to demonstrate that their companies are agents of positive change.

Find out more about how mobility supports leadership pipelines! Read Worldwide ERC®’s report: The Perfect Storm: Talent Mobility Leaders Decode the Future.  

You can also attend this year’s Global Workforce Symposium, where noted mobility experts are set to discuss, among many other topics, the future of leadership in our industry. Learn more about all the 2018 Global Workforce Symposium has to offer or register today!

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