CEOs biggest HR concern is the quality of the managers coming up behind them, according to a CEO survey released by the Conference Board yesterday. The Conference Board found that,
finding qualified managerial talent (sixth place) and top management succession (seventh place) have become the dominant people issues for U.S. CEOs, replacing last year's top HR concern, healthcare costs. The two concerns are closely intertwined because competition for talented managers will become even fiercer as many baby boomers depart the "top of the house" to move into "third-stage careers" and retirement.Still, healthcare costs remained a much larger concern for CEOs in the U.S., where it ranked 16th, than for their counterparts in Asia and Europe, where healthcare costs ranked 69th and 71st, respectively, suggesting that healthcare remains a competitive liability when U.S. companies compete abroad.
The survey also concluded that CEOs of "less successful" companies felt the pressure from rising healthcare and energy costs more than CEOs of companies deemed "more successful." CEOs from less successful companies valued consistent execution of strategy more highly than their "more successful" counterparts and were less interested in speed, flexibility and adaptability.