The Best-Half Newsletter

"There is one prerequisite to managing the second half of your life:
You must begin doing so long before you enter it." Peter Drucker

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November 2008
All of a sudden the world is a different place
Financial calamity, fiscal uncertainty and a new U.S. president elect all in the space of a couple of months. Oh and Canada re-elected a Conservative minority. Change is a constant. The future is filled with uncertainty and if there was ever a time for business to adapt, change and do things differently now would be the time.

The global financial system "needs a fundamental reboot". That was the clearest conclusion from the 700 or so Davos delegates gathered in Dubai recently to discuss how to lead us out of the financial wilderness. Everyone agreed that the global crisis, of which the financial system's meltdown is currently the public face.

"Could finance be a model for other areas in the sense that no one saw the actual crisis coming?" asked one speaker. "How long before the world is hit by a pandemic?" asked another.

One of the most telling comments to come out of the Economist debriefing on the event was  "This is the same elite that caused the problem, [and is] not the group to find the solution."

Already, a new lexicon is emerging for the rebooting phase. This is a "leadership moment". Global co-ordinated action is needed. The unthinkable must be thought. Business as usual is no longer an option. What is needed is "restorative innovation." Solutions should be transformational, and sustainable. "Silos" are bad. Thinking holistically, connectedly, outside of our silos, is essential.

A leadership moment is what propelled Barack Obama to his victory in the US Presidential contest. Always leaderful (sorry) he out-shone John McCain whenever they were together and when ever they were apart.

Companies and organizations of any size have the opportunity to step forward and have their own leadership moment.
If you are a leader, now is your time - let's keep the ball rolling.

The subject of leadership is appropriate as we are introducing some changes here ourselves. The first is the new corporate identity at the top of this newsletter. Communica has long been our legal identity and now will become a more prominent face for the work being done through The Best-Half, Strategic Choice International and Direct Outcomes. Thank you to Bob and Michelle Edmonds of Electra Communications for their design skills and advice.

Our focus is and has been for many years, authentic leadership development. We will be sharing more about authentic leadership through this newsletter in the coming months. We hope you will come with us on the adventure!

Warm regards
Marilyn, Gordon and Amanda

An altered state of readiness

It's said that men and women define the term "ready" in two different ways. For men being ready is a finite. I will be ready at 6:00 PM. For women (huge disclaimer here in order to avoid physical harm) ready is a process. I will be ready sometime that approximates 6:00 PM.
For organizations readiness takes on a different connotation. An organization successfully moves to a greater level when it is ready to do so. This readiness quotient is a critical measurement that CEOs need to have their finger on as they develop future strategy. For some organizations readiness involves establishing criteria, measuring results and confirming findings. For other organizations there needs to be a shift in culture, a change initiative or a "burning platform" to push readiness to the forefront (see above for examples!)
I remember going to a presentation with David Foot, author of Boom Bust and Echo, over 12 years ago. David at that point had been working on the demographics of the Canadian population for his whole career. He talked then about the impending shift in Canada's demographics. The writing was on the wall. But as individuals and organizations we were just not ready to act. It wasn't keeping us up at night.
Starting the development of what would become the Best-Half in 2001, I experienced a similar reaction when talking to people. Baby boomer retirement was not on most people's radar.
A recent "Pulse on Leaders" study by Personnel Decisions International (PDI) analyzed data on a group of CEOs to find out what keeps them up at night. The survey asked what were their top three business challenges. The top three responses were achieving top-line growth, talent management and meeting financial objectives.
"It's a very telling indication of how crucial talent management issues are to company success when CEOs mention talent management challenges over the challenge of meeting financial objectives," said Brian Davis, Ph.D., executive vice president at PDI. "Today talent is the most important asset for organizations, and company leaders recognize how essential addressing talent management issues are to the overall performance and success of the business."

"The war for talent is over and the talent won," said Carl Camden, CEO of Kelly Services. "We no longer have a bottomless pool of talent to do the work that is needed. Even highly successful businesses are scrambling to tap this limited pool and are adapting the business and workplace to address a new normal."
So we are already seeing a rapid ramp-up of importance in talent management that is going to totally redefine the nature of human resources and the strategic HR function. This significant new role encompassing branding and marketing of a company to compete in the global talent lottery, ensures for HR practitioners an exciting future which readies them and the organization for the market trends ahead and beyond their former outdated roles.

Are you ready to live your legacy?
The Best-Half puts people  in touch with what really matters to them at any stage of their career and shows them how to dream, find purpose, new meaning and engagement in both their life at work and home. - hint: it's all about legacy, possibility  and resiliency! For employers the Best-Half provides a process for dialogue between the employee and the organization allowing for effective medium and long range resource planning and succession throughout the entire spectrum of an individual's career.

Call us if you want to help your people plan for the future so you know who and what talent you can count on. It's going to be here before you know it (the future that is...)