New Global Study Finds Most Companies Unprepared For Forthcoming “Leadership Gap”

Though results indicate broad awareness of the looming “leadership gap,” expected to materialize over the next decade, the majority of organizations are neither prepared, nor are taking the necessary steps to meet this challenge.
Feb. 6, 2009 - PRLog -- Contact: Michael Burke
MSR Communications
(415) 989-9000           

Leah Walling
CPP, Inc.
(800) 624-1765


Most Companies Ignoring Necessary Steps to Recruit and Develop Leadership Talent to Replace Droves of Retiring “Boomers”

MOUNTAIN VIEW, Calif., February 5, 2009—CPP, Inc., an industry leader in research, training, and organizational development tools including the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator® assessment, today announced the results of its worldwide study on workplace leadership. The study shows that organizations worldwide face strikingly similar challenges regarding workforce and succession management. Though results indicate broad awareness of the looming “leadership gap,” expected to materialize over the next decade as baby boomers begin retiring in droves, the majority of organizations are neither prepared, nor are taking the necessary steps to meet this challenge.

“If businesses continue to ignore the oncoming leadership gap, they may see devastating consequences,” said Jeff Hayes, CEO, CPP, Inc. “As it becomes increasingly difficult to obtain and retain top performers with strong leadership experience, organizations may find their greatest asset – their workforce – in jeopardy.”

The report summarizes the opinions of hundreds of HR professionals and line-of-business managers from North America, Europe, Asia-Pacific, Brazil, and South Africa on their preparations and projections for the coming decade, as well as their current challenges and practices. The study found that while 58% of respondents expect their organizations to grow over the next 10 years, the majority from all regions except Brazil also expect hiring, retaining, and developing leaders to become more difficult. Despite this broad anticipation, however, the study indicates an overall lack of preparedness, with no more than 40% of all respondents reporting having a formalized succession or executive coaching program in place in their organization, and only 54% reporting having a process in place to identify potential leaders.  

“With the slowing economy and changing workforce, organizations face significant leadership challenges in the coming years” said Josh Bersin, president of Bersin & Associates, a leading analyst firm in enterprise learning and talent management. “Consequently, leadership development, executive coaching, and career development should be among the priority investment areas for most companies today.”  

Preparing for the Worst by Grooming the Best
The apparent lack of urgency on the matter seems to go hand-in-hand with a sense of perceived inevitability of Baby Boomer retiree-induced leadership skill decline. The majority (72% in the U.S. and 60% around the rest of the globe) of respondents are bracing for the impact of ill-equipped employees assuming higher-level positions due to the lack of available talent. Consequently, respondents also anticipate a high level of employee burnout.

“Companies should be concerned, because poor leadership can have serious top-to-bottom ripple effects, from employee burnout to underperformance of the entire company,” said Mike Morris, Ph.D., Senior Research Scientist, CPP, Inc. “The survey data tells us that hiring and developing leaders will be more difficult in the future, and companies that prepare their leaders should have a big advantage.”

Respondents cited several challenges to their leadership development plans, including a rapidly changing competitive environment, knowledge retention, pressure to innovate, generational differences, and, most notably, pressure to cut costs.

“While these problems will continue to plague business, organizations are not unavoidably at the mercy of such forces,” said Hayes. ”CPP helped companies with developing a leadership pipeline long before the leadership gap emerged, and shares the opinion of the many respondents that a solid long-term leadership development program can identify, retain and prepare future leaders, and reenergize employee bases.”

To read the complete report, visit

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About CPP, Inc.
Since its founding in 1956, CPP, Inc., has been a leading publisher and provider of innovative products and services for individual and organizational development, supplying reliable training solutions to businesses of all sizes, including the Fortune 500. The company’s hundreds of offerings have been used by millions of individuals in more than 100 countries, in more than 20 languages, to help people and organizations grow and develop by improving performance and increasing understanding. Among CPP’s world-renowned brands and services are the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator®, Strong Interest Inventory®, Thomas-Kilmann Conflict Mode Instrument (TKI), FIRO-B®, and CPI 260® assessments; and CPP Professional Services. For more on CPP, visit

Myers-Briggs Type Indicator, Myers-Briggs, and MBTI are registered trademarks of the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator Trust. Strong Interest Inventory, FIRO-B, and CPI 260 are registered trademarks of CPP, Inc.

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