According to the most recent corporate data, only 11% of companies surveyed have a strong leadership bench…the lowest rating in 10 years.
Recently a quarterly edition of the 2021 Global Leadership Forecast reports that companies all over the globe are experiencing a leadership crisis. Only 11% of firms questioned said they had a “strong” or “solid” leadership bench. This is the lowest rating in the last ten years. And there are other leadership surprises in store.
According to Development Dimensions International (DDI), the annual study links to corporations’ inability to offer leadership development. Nor is there transition training for newly recruited and incumbent executives.
In 2011, the highest worldwide average grade for bench strength was 18%. According to the corporation, it has been on the decrease since that time.
Without solid leadership pipelines, it may be difficult for businesses to have the most capable people in top posts to negotiate the day-to-day difficulties of operating a company, much alone react to and recover from crisis circumstances.
They discovered that firms with excellent leadership development programs had not just better leaders, but also a considerably stronger bench. None of the firms with no leadership development had a strong bench, according to the research.
Between February and July, 2020 came the results of the DDI survey. It contains information from over 15,000 business executives and 2,100 human resource experts from 1,740 companies across 24 sectors throughout the world.
After the Great Recession, leadership capabilities have recovered.
The 18 percent leadership bench rating in 2011 was still lower than some would like to see, with less than 20% of businesses having a bench of skilled leaders available to fill crucial jobs according to Stephanie Neal, director of DDI’s Center for Analytics and Behavioral Research.
However, following the 2008 recession, some saw leadership talents rebound.
So it’s possible that 2011 ratings came at a time when HR departments were more confident that they had rehired and rebuilt or reinforced capabilities after the recession. The ratings were better than the following years, but they were still poor she remarked. Other key conclusions from the poll include:
- The survey found a solid leadership bench in 28% of firms with high-quality development.
- When the results combined evaluation and development, the bench strength increased even more.
- Nearly 40% of businesses that provided high-quality development and evaluation had a solid pool of leaders ready to take on key responsibilities.
Stress harms leadership confidence.
Regardless of how long it had been since their traumatic shift, over half of all leaders evaluated themselves as ordinary or below-average leaders. In contrast, just 16% of executives with low-stress transitions gave themselves bad marks.
These findings indicate that the most critical move firms can take to achieve executive performance and long-term bench strength is to invest in leadership development DDI stated.
On the other hand, assessment and feedback are crucial in building a stronger bench. Only 57 percent of firms presently use assessment to identify leadership strengths and development requirements, This is true even though 86 percent of organizations use formal leadership development programs.
We are experiencing a generation of “forgotten” leadership.
There is a danger of a “lost generation” of leaders, according to the DDI assessment.
During the pandemic, leaders migrating into new jobs reported a considerable decline in assistance. This was particularly the case in the areas of feedback, development, and evaluation. Leaders recorded the most significant decline in leadership training.
Before the pandemic, 61 percent of executives said they received leadership skills training when they transitioned into new responsibilities. However, by 2021, that percentage had dropped to 48 percent.
- According to the report, men are set up to succeed more than women.
- According to the survey, men are 13% more likely than women to get leadership skills training.
- They are 19% more likely to be officially appraised, and 22% more likely to be given a formal mentor.
- Women are also less likely than males to have clear expectations for success in their new positions, the survey said.
- However, just 55% of women, compared to 61% of males, reported having solid, updated growth plans.
It pays to strengthen your bench.
Objective evaluations greatly enhance bench strength, according to DDI.
Providing an impartial appraisal is one of the most critical components in assisting leaders in making a smooth transition. This knowledge helps leaders determine where they should concentrate their efforts for maximum development. Furthermore, this knowledge had a significant influence on total bench strength.
The right support is required.
People transitioning into leadership positions can anticipate experiencing some growing pains, DDI’s Neal said. But some have discovered that their challenges are lasting much beyond their transitional phase.
Leaders typically desire to create a favorable first impression and will go to great lengths to maintain that image. On the other hand, leaders will continue to suffer if they do not get enough support throughout their transition and subsequent journey.
Organizations must guarantee the necessary instruments — such as leadership evaluations and development — are in use to ensure that their leaders can succeed.