« How many times have you heard the common cry I want to grow and build this organisation but we simply just don’t have the right talent? The realisation that talent shortfalls can constrain growth, impede successful mergers, or derail a strategy has boards paying closer attention to talent topics than ever before. Recognising the competitive advantage a secure pipeline of engaged, diverse, and ready-to-lead talent provides, many corporate boards are extending their reach deep into human resources issues-leadership development, compensation, and succession planning reaching several levels below the chief executive officer.
There’s good reason. Talent scarcity is an obstacle that impacts virtually every large company and people issues have a direct impact on company performance. In the past, companies could bolster their advantage with a superior supply chain, strong product lines, or highly efficient facilities. Today, knowledge and the people who can leverage it are core differentiators. Having talent is not enough. Successful companies identify, attract, develop and retain the right talent effectively and consistently.
By understanding what is driving this change, the chief human resources officers (CHRO) can ensure that they are serving their board’s changing needs, and seize this opportunity to expand the influence of HR inside and outside their company-in some cases, by taking on board-level positions themselves. By that same token, CEOs had better ensure that their CHROs are board-capable and will represent the CEO and the company as a whole. As boards focus on helping to influence corporate strategy in more meaningful ways, the availability and quality of human capital join finance and operations as a risk factor. Boards are also considering whether their companies have the right people to support global growth. This ultimately falls on the shoulders of the CEO and his/her CHRO ».
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