The Next Generation – Internal Mobility or "Importing" from Outside?
Companies that nurture future managers may be wondering whether they are missing out on talents from the outside.
Every year, multiple studies and surveys are published that rank the leading global companies in terms of leadership, such as the ever-present McDonald's, Coca-Cola, IBM, Procter & Gamble, General Electric, Intel, and so on. What these top companies have in common, from a leadership perspective, is their dedication to nurture the next generation of managerial talent within their own ranks. Tens of thousands of managers are surveyed, and the companies are ranked for their efforts in training future managers from among their current employees.
Different prominent trends can be perceived in the rankings every year. Sometimes organizations nurture adaptive leaders who can weather storms and come out on top, and sometimes they nurture innovative leaders who will champion advancements and change the face of the organization. But there are two defining characteristics that consistently set the very top companies apart from the others: they have a strategy, and are looking toward the future. The companies ranked in the top 20 places identify and nurture the employees with the greatest potential, so that when the day comes that they are needed to play important roles, the right employees with the right skills will be in the right places. They conduct an official performance evaluation and career planning procedure for their managerial talents, helping them become good, successful leaders.
The Benefits of Internal Mobility
Organizations that place emphasis on human capital and on developing internal leadership potential set themselves apart thanks to their strategic approach, as well as the effort they invest in improving and expanding the toolkit they offer mid-level managers. At leading organizations, nurturing the next generation is not viewed as an option, but as a necessity. It is in this climate that managers are born – courageous leaders who, in a crisis, will not cut their losses and run, but rather consider future goals, in accordance with the company's vision.
These companies send the message to their employees that mistakes and complex problem solving are an opportunity for improvement, not a battlefield for hurling mutual accusations. An adaptive organizational culture operates based on a clear vision, intentions, and goals, and motivates employees to play an active role in contributing to the organization's success.
Another benefit of nurturing leadership within an organization is the continuation of the organization's spirit and ability to pass along management tools, alongside the organization's values and vision, to it's employees – the future managers of the organization. When bringing in an "outside" executive, that spirit may be lost. However, when it is instilled in the lower ranks, it will only grow stronger as they ascend to more senior roles.
What Does This Have to Do with Us?
At first glance, some of the statements made in this post may challenge the executive search business model. However quite the opposite is true – we encourage and support the development and promotion of mid-level managers. In crisis-ridden Israel, the adaptive leadership approach, stemming from an organization that nurtures its managerial ranks from within its own employees, can make a huge contribution to handling local and international markets in the best possible way. While adopting this approach, many organizations also opt to evaluate external candidates to make sure they are not missing out on valuable managerial talents or the opportunity to introduce new blood, essential skills, knowhow, proven experience, and diverse perspectives to the organization.
Our specialist expertise does not only focus on locating or "hunting" external executives – rather, we define and identify the most suitable candidate among all the relevant executives, including executives within the recruiting organization. The power of the executive search process is that it is a completely objective, unbiased decision support tool. Therefore, when recommending the most suitable candidate for the position, we apply the same professional standards to both internal and external candidates.