Despite Cutbacks, Firms Invest in Developing Leaders: Companies Renew Focus on Employee Training, Betting That Strong Managers Will Help Through the Recovery
By Dana Mattioli
Despite layoffs and recession-starved budgets, many employers are investing in leadership-development programs, hoping not to be caught short of strong managers when the economy recovers.
Identifying and grooming leaders is important in good times, says Bret Furio, senior vice president of consumer lifestyle for Philips Electronics North America. “In times of crisis when the economy is struggling,” he adds, “it’s imperative.”
Like many companies, Philips Electronics NV is trimming its training budget this year. A December survey of 117 large U.S. companies by Watson Wyatt Worldwide Inc. found 23% of respondents had recently cut training programs, and another 18% planned to do so this year.