Between 2009 and 2011, one risk on Lloyd's Global Risk Index moved from number twenty-two to number two.
In a world of economic uncertainty, the number one business risk was the loss of customers, but it was the number two risk - number one in the Asia-Pacific region - that received most attention: the talent and skills shortage.
The United States, with a national unemployment rate over 8%, still can't get the right people to fill existing jobs. Australia's unemployment rate is officially around 5%, but with much untapped talent, ABS Statistics show it is actually higher.
Australia's mining states are facing a skills shortage and immigrant workers are seen as part of the solution.
Welcome to the Talent Paradox.
This paradox is caused by demographics, lack of the right skills and the technology that organisations use to produce and achieve more with less.
As the Baby Boomers begin to retire, a talent gap emerges and, when combined with a skills shortage in certain industries, the talent and skills shortage grows.
With organisations achieving more with less, there is less talent to promote and for many managers these are foreign and challenging times. Unsurprisingly, retention has become the new recruitment, global the new local, age is moving (slowly) from liability to possibility, and people skills the new management emphasis of those wise enough to see.
Talent management - a term last used in the late 1990s - is becoming the new challenge along with those soft, but hard, people skills.
For some organisations, particularly in Australia's mining states, the challenge is already here, Lloyd's Global Risk Index simply confirms its priority.
For other organisations, the global talent and skills shortage may seem distant but any risk that moves from a global rating of twenty-two to two in two years - and to number one in the Asia-Pacific region - deserves to be recognised and anticipated.
Are you ready for it?
Quotes to Consider
"This is another paradox: what is soft is strong." Lao Tzu (600bc), Chinese philosopher.
Are your soft skills strong, or do they belong to another age?
"Wisdom is knowing what to do next, skill is knowing how to do it, and virtue is doing it."
David Starr Jordan (1851-1931), Leading US Educator & Peace Activist.
Do you know what to do next, if not, what's your pretext for doing it?
Australasia’s Passion Provocateur©