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Managing talent in a turbulent economy: Part four

Leaning into the recovery

Managing talent in a turbulent economy: Part 5


Deloitte’s September 2009 survey, “Managing talent in a turbulent economy: Leaning into the recovery,” reveals a clear divide between companies that are positioning themselves effectively for the economic recovery and those that are in danger of being left behind. While hunkering down may help a company survive the recession, we believe it represents a losing strategy for companies that want to excel during changing times and the economic recovery and that companies that remain in a defensive posture risk losing the increasingly critical fight for talent. The results of the September survey revealed the following key findings:

  • The hints of economic optimism that first appeared in the May survey have grown considerably. Surveyed executives and talent managers who believe the worst is behind us outnumber those who believe the worst is yet to come—and by a considerable margin.
  • Many companies in the survey are implementing strategies to avoid a resume tsunami by going on the offensive to retain today’s key employees and train the next generation of leaders. Corporate layoffs, which have been prevalent throughout this survey series, declined significantly at these companies, suggesting that many companies have completed the task of rightsizing their workforces.
  • While nearly all surveyed companies recognize the importance of innovation, few of them appear to have talent plans in place to drive innovation in their businesses.
  • There are clear and compelling differences between talent and innovation leaders and talent and innovation laggards. We identify talent and innovation leaders as those companies with a deep understanding of the link between talent and innovation, making them far more likely to have identified the critical employees who drive innovation in their companies; far more likely to have specific training programs in place to develop critical innovation employees; and far more likely to be making the investments—both financial and non-financial— needed to retain the employees who drive innovation in their companies.

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