Monday, September 11, 2006

American Management Association Identifies Corporate Concerns about Aging Workforce

The September 2006 issue of the American Management Associations's Moving Ahead includes an article by Theresa Welbourne, Ph.D., reporting on the results of an extensive Leadership Pulse study focusing on the "AWF"--the "aging workforce." The survey found that of 369 respondents--from general managers to C-level executives, 43% report that an AWF will affect their organizational culture, only 24% did not; in addition, 42% felt the AWF would affect the quality of their talent, while 26% reported little or no concern of this.

And after reviewing the qualitative data, the researchers identified three major areas of concern:
  • Culture Change--"some view this as a strategic opportunity to reshape their organizational culture in a new and desirable direction."
  • Knowledge Gap--"As older employees leave, their talent, knowledge, deep relationships and extensive, on-the-job training exits with them. These are elements that simply cannot be replaced through the hiring of recent college graduates."
  • Leadership Gap--"Respondents were also concerned about the loss of leadership knowledge, skills and abilities." However, again, others view upside of the situation, by bringing a welcome opportunity for new leadership.
Source: American Management Associaton "Strategies for Dealing with the Challenges and Opportunities of America’s Aging Workforce" (September 2006)

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