USA Today runs a series called “Executive Suite: Advice from the Top” where it shares advice from noted leaders in the business world. Recently, it shared some wisdom from the CEO of 3M, George Buckley, and the timing couldn’t have been better.
Chief Executive magazine and the Hay Group (a global management consulting firm that works with leaders to transform strategy into reality) recently released the 2009 rankings of the companies that are best at developing future leaders. 3M stepped into the coveted #1 position after placing 15th in 2008.
The half page article consisted of an interview conducted by Del Jones, the USA Today corporate management reporter. Throughout the discussion, Buckley placed extensive emphasis on the critical issue of developing leaders. In fact, he pointed out that especially during a recession, training and development of future leaders is imperative!
The reporter asked: “In this economy, can companies afford the cost of leadership development?” Buckley responded with an answer which should be discussed in great depth by every leadership team in the nation. He said: “Years ago, when I worked at Brunswick, I was asked, ‘George, it’s a tough time right now. Should we be spending money on training? What if these people leave the company?’ My answer was, ‘WHAT IF WE DON’T, AND THEY STAY?'”
Think about the consequences as you remember that 3M is currently #1 in the nation at developing future leaders!