Building a sustainable pipeline doesn't just entail recruiting, training, and giving raises so your executives don't jump ship. Rather, it touches on building a strong culture of talent across the entire company which requires inspired leadership from the top.
Agility is not to be taken for granted: look at the recent experience of such iconic companies as Sony, Kodak, Panasonic, and, more recently, P&G--companies that had it, and are struggling to regain it. Agility is spread evenly, if thinly, around the world. Yet given the context of India’s rapid growth, top leaders in India can’t survive without it.
All expats are tempted to demonstrate value immediately, to be the hero they were hired to be. Yet many expats conclude their assignments having erected castles in the sand. It doesn’t take long for waves of change to wash their achievements away, even as they get promoted for their great work.
One multinational's regional president of Asia told me, "We have too many cooks in the kitchen willing to sharpen their knives. Managing up, in the midst of running my business, is the toughest part of my job."
Expats and their employers—each for different reasons—are converging on a similar outcome: an end to the expat commitment.
Every step up the ladder has an opportunity cost: the road not taken. The conversation on “career changes” forces executives to ponder deeper questions relating to their basic motivations, aspirations, and dreams. What am I good at and why? What if I did follow my dreams? What are the consequences of not taking the big leap?
While careful not to minimize the importance of pay in China, I truly wonder whether paying at the 50 percentile or 75 percentile is going to make much of a difference in a country where managers routinely get 50% increases in pay to jump to a competitor.
He's the un-superman. I'm tempted to doom Tom with the 'effective manager' moniker, which isn't how we describe game-changers in this day and age. Most impressively, this leader, based in Asia and armed with natural charm, savvy, and empathy, altered the organization's orientation from a headquarters' sense of true north to an entirely new bearing, a place deep inside the Cinese consumer.
Haven’t we all felt that exhilarating moment when all parties in a drama – be it a meeting, a sales pitch, a job interview – clicked on an intellectual and emotional level?
Tomorrow’s battle for corporate dominance will be fought and won in the emerging markets of Asia, home to half the world’s population. The the winners are likely to Asian.