Spring 2018 Newsletter Vol. 21, No. 1

The Business of Business- Our perspective

Over the past 6 months we have observed some emerging trends across our varied business segments based on the requests for support from current and new client organizations.  Our clients are equally split between for profit and non for profit businesses.  As these “trends” emerge in both market arenas, it usually is indicative of what the news media and business publications will be talking about in future months.  Yes, we’re in an era of instant social media, but true reporting and analysis still requires great skill and research.  The following areas I believe are significant but truly represent observations from our corner of the market.  Of course the key is for each of us to anticipate, if an area is true and realistic, as to how it may impact you professionally.

1= Businesses are making strategic leadership changes on a continuous basis.

There are three reasons driving this proactive approach to focusing on the future. A= we are now into more than one year of the current administration.  By watching the news we all observe significant changes in policies and regulations.  Organizations are adapting quickly in a reasonably healthy economic environment.  In other words, they are seizing the moment.  B= Many leaders are retiring and or shifting their personal work mode to different industry segments, but not retiring from active employment.  In the greater Washington area as well as across the country, the 70 year old and up workforce participation has doubled in the last 5 + years.  C= Unemployment rates are at an all time low across the board, with many opting for part time or contract opportunities.  Overall business is focusing on leadership.  If you can articulate your personal “Contributive Value” to an organization and to business outcomes, you will have opportunities to prove your worth.

2= What are Search Firms doing differently today because of client demands?

There is significant change activity in the Search Firm industry.  First we have seen Search Firms offering a full array of services versus just traditional retained search.  In essence they are becoming Human Resource organizations offering search, leadership profiling, and assessment of capabilities, development coaching, along with corporate compensation analysis and on boarding programs. Second, we have seen increased use of search firms because of their abilities to understand in depth background checks to avoid potential embarrassment to the hiring organization.  The third key focus is on cross industry searches to bring varied expertise into a market space that was typically more siloed with internal industry promotions.  This is being valued because of change and flexibility in business demands.

3= Blended revenue and business model evolution.

Many were surprised when Toys R Us announced their bankruptcy and closing of all US operations.  Their story is indicative of how models are changing and they admit they missed that cue more than 10 years ago.  They believed big-box would still be a viable approach to sales growth.  Companies like Walmart saw the changes and have blended their models both in traditional store, online and partnerships with other respected business companies.  Leadership in critical thinking and intuitiveness are key attributes in demand in the market place today!

Overall, the business community is looking for individuals with not only great competencies, but ones that are also great to work with and for!  The total person is thought of as a 24/7 individual that can gain credibility with all stakeholders and respond to current and future business needs before they are fully articulated.  To be in this group they are looking for those that continue to invest in their personal development and professional communities.  Yes, they are asking for today’s leaders to not only understand and envision future business needs and directions, but at the same time drive the organization profitably through ongoing change while respecting the company’s history and reputation. Your career can/is a multimillion dollar asset! Make sure you continue to invest in yourself.


Of interest

My “Life Long Learning Commitment” has me tentatively traveling with Nanda Journeys to Hungary and Czechoslovak with a structured learning group of executives.  While in the planning process our goal is to spend 12 days learning about Government, Business, Education, Culture and Life Style plus visit historical sites.  More on this as the plans hopefully come together in the next few months.  Nanda Journeys has taken over specific areas from The People to People organization created under President Eisenhower to broaden global interaction.  If you would have any interest in participating please feel free to contact me or visit www.nandajourneys.com

Miles LeHane Blogs.  If you would like to receive our weekly “educational/informational” blogs, please go to our website and sign up.  We have been successfully producing this blog now for well over a year and truly welcome you to contribute as a guest blogger.  Please send your contributions for the blog, of 200 to 350 words or so directly to dmiles@mileslehane.com

Our Books.  The 4th edition of The Four Pillars of Employable Talent and Building Block Essentials are being well received.  We have donated over 300 copies of Building Blocks (a focus on success factors for job search) to colleges and Workforce Centers.

Final thought!  As spring arrives and Mother Nature embarks on her “renewal process” each of us needs to ask the vital question about our personal renewal to ourselves and our careers!