Friday, May 21, 2010
May HBR: The Leaders We Need Now
“The Leaders We Need Now” (by Tamara Erickson) discusses how companies must develop Gen X leaders (born between 1961 and 1981) to replace the Boomers—when the finally decide to leave the workforce! You may recall that earlier this year, I reviewed Erickson’s newest book, What’s Next, GenX? (Harvard Press, 2010). So, I won’t repeat the guts of that, but want to point out two issues relevant to GenXers. First, they believe that Boomers will NEVER retire and will hold on forever. Second, Xers believe they’re being overlooked (sometimes skipped in favor of GenYs, Millennials. Xers feel like the Rodney Dangerfields of leadership—they get overlooked in corporate America. However, with the impending mass exodus of Boomers (over 90% of the world’s top 200 firms are run by Boomers, in their 60s, or by those even older) and the competencies that Xers bring to the table, it makes a lot of sense for companies to not only cultivate but also prepare Xers to take over the corporate reins.