Lance Secretan - Inspiring Workplaces

The Shortage of Inspiring Places to Work

by Lance Secretan

Business leaders are crying the blues about the so called, “shortage of talent”.

Tomas Chamorro-Premuzic, a Professor of Psychology at Columbia University, where he teaches MBA students, says that when he began teaching MBA students they all wanted to work for corporate giants like Goldman Sachs, IBM, and Unilever. A decade later, those names were more likely to be Google, Facebook, Apple and Amazon. But today, he says, MBA students no longer want anything to do with the corporate world at all.

Every day in my work with corporate executives I hear them describe their pain—their burnout, exhaustion and disillusionment and their plans to maneuver their exit from the corporate world as soon as possible.

I believe that there is no shortage of talent—just a shortage of places where people WANT to work.

The intake end of the talent pipeline (Millennials and Generation Z) is shrinking. And the other end of the talent pipeline (Boomers) is too, as both seek lives that are a more inspiring alternative to the corporate world.

Add a skewed emphasis on teaching STEM skills in lower education, and quantification skills in business schools—both of which have only a marginal relevance to the development of behaviors and characteristics that lead to building inspiring relationshipsand you have a mislabeled “shortage of talent”.

Lance Secretan - Great places to workI’ve been told 100 times by healthcare executives that there is a shortage of nurses in healthcare. I always respond that there is no shortage of nurseswe have probably trained five times as many nurses as we could employ in healthcare. The real problem is that there is a shortage of places where nurses want to work.

In my book, The Bellwether Effect, I describe the eight things we do in business that have caused this disillusionment with the corporate world, and how we can fix it.

What are you doing in your organization to make it so attractive that it becomes a magnet for the talent you wish to attract?


Dr. Lance Secretan is the Founder of The Secretan Center,  author of 22 bestselling leadership books, (including his newest, The Bellwether Effect), was the former CEO of Manpower, and has been ranked #1 in the world by Leadership Excellence.