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Employers must rethink leadership strategies, says Harvard Business Publishing

Business executives prioritise defining fresh strategies, but most lack the right talent in their business to achieve them with inadequate plans to address the issue, says Harvard Business School.

It believes there is an urgent need for employers to change their leadership development models if they are to better define their business strategies.

According to the 2012 economic global survey from Harvard Business Publishing, executives have low confidence in the talent within their organisations, but they don't prioritise developing/recruiting skills to meet business goals.

In the survey of more than 500 global c-suite leaders, a third of business executives (34%) said they will not make 'attracting and developing talent' an increased priority this year while a fifth of them are either 'not very confident' or 'not at all confident' that their organisation has the necessary talent and skills to achieve their strategic goals.

Harvard Business Publishing believes leadership development has to change as organisations are becoming more global, time-pressured, fast-moving and increasingly dependent on technology. This is accentuated by a cultural shift: younger people taking the helm are more open towards change and there is a need to engage more people in decision making in a horizontal structure across the organisation globally.

Ray Carvey, executive vice president of Corporate Learning and International at Harvard Business Publishing said: "We are concerned when we see that many executives around the world don't have confidence in their organisation's skills to achieve strategic goals and that most of them are not planning to address it.

"Doing business today is fundamentally different from just a year ago and you have to have the right talent within the organisation to meet your goals.

"Today it's not just about the CEO calling the shots. Creating leaders must happen on an international scale to connect disparate workforces as well as at a deeper level within the organisation to engage more people.

"Virtual leadership development has the unrivalled benefits to meet these demands. It accelerates a business strategy which is essential to not only adapt to today's market conditions - but also take advantage of them and stay ahead. Those who don't get on board will be left behind."