Category Archives: Employer Tips

As Boomers Retire, Companies Struggle To Develop Senior Leadership

May 12, 2015 – With about 4 million Baby Boomers retiring annually, companies worldwide are experiencing a growing talent gap at the executive level, which comes as no surprise to us at Signature Source. A recent survey reports that nearly a third of firms polled are struggling to fill senior leadership role, while 59 percent agreed succession planning is more challenging in today’s economy. Read More

The Group Interview: Is It Right For Your Business?

August 15, 2014 – Job candidates view the interview as their chance to shine, to convince a new employer that they are the most qualified candidate for the job. So when a candidate is advised the first interview will be conducted in a group setting, they are often confused and shocked, and in some cases, will refuse to participate, especially if they are at an executive level.

At Signature Source, we often are asked about the group interview concept, by clients and candidates. What follows is our primer on the subject. Read More

Motivation Is Key To A Leader’s Effectiveness

July 14, 2014 – Effective leaders possess a blend of characteristics, however the number one trait that makes them successful is their ability to motivate and lead others.

A survey of 1,270 business leaders from around the world found that by a margin of 3:1, 68 percent of the survey participants said they preferred a senior executive who could motivate and inspire others more than they desired an executive who consistently performed well, which was mentioned by only 26 percent of respondents. This came as no surprise to our staff at Signature Source, since we recruit top talent for more than 42 leading global-mobility organizations and seek out candidates with great motivation skills.

In addition the survey, conducted by IIC Partners, discovered that the price of entry to a corner office remains competency. But once they settle in, a leader’s success is more about how they inspire and motivate others to perform at their peak rather than what he or she does individually. Read More

Good Leaders Give Power To Their Employees

June 24, 2014 – Trust your employees and celebrate their achievements, a winning formula for running a successful business, according to David Novak, chairman and CEO of Yum! Brands, which includes KFC, Pizza Hut and Taco Bell.

In the recent edition of HR Magazine, Novak provides insight on how to unleash the power of your employees and effectively manage them while building a work environment that allows them to thrive and grow into leaders. His thoughts struck a chord at Signature Source, since we understand that for a company to recruit top talent they must create a work environment that allows employees to flourish.

Novak’s key thoughts on leadership building:

  • To engage employees, it’s important to explain the “why” behind an idea. Then ask for employee input and involvement, which translates into a commitment for all involved, working toward a common goal.
  • Remember that employees do not function at their best and most creative when working in a vacuum with no feedback. Effective leaders are sincerely interested in their employees and able to provide direct feedback on projects they are working on. Even criticism, if done in a constructive manner that will improve the outcome, is usually welcome.
  • Creating a trusting environment in which every employee has a chance to contribute fosters strong leaders and helps people become better coaches.
  • Hire employees that are “whole-brained” – analytical and creative – with ambition, passion and the ability to inspire.
  • Celebrate achievements. “When you recognize people, it says that you’re watching them, that what they do matters,” he told HR Magazine. “It keeps employees motivated and excited to come to work every day.” But instead of a gold watch, Novak likes to have some fun with awards. His individual recognition award is an over-sized pair of walking teeth for people who “walk the talk” of leadership. When he was president of KFC he gave away floppy rubber chickens and $100. “People would sometimes cry when I gave them their chickens,” he said.

Developing leadership skills

At Signature Source, we are often asked if leaders are born or made. Our answer: Both! Some people are born leaders, possessing leadership skills that can be identified in nursery school. Some people, no matter how hard they try, will never be good leaders. Then there is the middle group from which the made leaders emerge.

Novak says that to be a good leader, the person must be self-aware, to know who they are and where they have been. But key to the self-awareness is not being self-involved, which prohibits people from leading and getting to know their employees.

He says the best leaders possess an understanding that they are unique, different from everyone else, and that their strengths, weaknesses, interests and knowledge are distinctive. In addition, leaders know:

  • • They will always be a work in progress.
  • • They have to soak up everything they can, to make them better leaders.
  • • They have to remain avid learners.

If you want to develop leadership skills, Novak’s advice is to follow these steps. It was the way he reached the top of his profession. For example, when he wanted to learn how to navigate Wall Street, he took Warren Buffett to lunch at KFC. To learn leadership skills, he shadowed UCLA’s basketball coach John Wooden. He soon learned that he could compete in business minus an MBA.

“Never lose the desire to learn,” he told the magazine. “The minute you stop learning, you start dying. That’s true in business, and it’s true in life.”

Thoughts to live by!

  • National Association Executive Recruiters
  • National Association Personnel Services
  • Foreign for Expatriate Management
  • Society for Human Resources Management
  • Worldwide ERC
  • Women Business Enterprise National Council
  • Southeast Regional Relocation Council
  • Chicago Relocation Council
  • North Texas Relocation Professionals
  • Houston Relocation Professionals
  • Tennessee Relocation Council
  • Midwest Relocation Council
  • Metro Atlanta Relocation Council