John Kenney, CEO, Cotney Consulting Group
Even when times are challenging and require some cost-cutting, think carefully before slashing funds that you might otherwise invest in your emerging leadership. This investment will pay off for your company over the long run. Leadership development is a pressing issue right now, especially in light of a lack of skilled professionals, and it is getting more crucial as time passes. Take this opportunity to expand training and mentoring opportunities for your up-and-coming leaders: people to whom you can pass the baton, employees in whom you will feel proud as you watch them develop.
This does not necessarily require sending them back to school. Much of leadership training comes from in-house, face-to-face, hands-on experience. One of the barriers to this is that one in five companies lacks a leadership development program and companies are not identifying potential leaders early enough in their careers.