Global_HR_Professionals_Survey_JPEGShedding the old year and ringing in the new always brings forward predictions of better times ahead. Otherwise, who would not be compelled to pull the sheet over their heads and refuse to get out of bed?

That said, what is in store for leadership development and training in 2013? According to one Seattle-based consultancy, Fierce Inc., business communications and leadership trends are going to change.

These predictions are based upon the company’s training experiences and Fierce expects to see business communications and leadership methods continue to be dominated by the dual impacts of technology and the modernization of management methods. 

These predictions include: 

1. Forward-thinking companies ditch the annual performance review.

The antiquated yearly performance review will begin to see a rapid demise. More frequent, even ad hoc, employee performance reviews will replace the stilted, uncomfortable conversations of yester-year. Organizations will embrace more spontaneous conversations about specific, recent performance functions, improving overall organization communication and allowing employees to more quickly improve the quality of their contributions.

This looks like coaching to me.

2. Work/life balance incentives become as coveted as monetary perks.

Cash-based incentives have long been the primary tool used to motivate and reward employees. In the modern workplace, where responsibilities are rarely constrained to office hours, work/life balance incentives have greater value. Fierce anticipates that incentives such as increased or even unlimited vacation time, the ability to pursue personal interests while at the office, e.g. gym memberships, continued education, management of fantasy football teams, etc., and even encouragement to engage in charitable efforts on company time will all become more prevalent.

3. Social media policies mature.

Social media has become a powerful communication tool, but also a risky one. In 2012, an Olympic athlete and a campaign aide were severely punished for poor communication choices delivered via social media. In 2013, organizations of all types will develop clearer social media policies, eliminating some of the ambiguity that currently exists. In addition, IT staffs and marketing departments will collaborate more closely to develop methods and policies that allow employees to engage in strategically driven social media marketing.

4. Succession planning becomes a higher priority.

C-suite changes are inevitable, and the pressures on company executives are only increasing. 2013 will continue to see significant turnover at the very top of organizations in all industries, but companies will become better prepared for these changes. Investment in succession planning will skyrocket, allowing companies to better manage change internally and externally.

This makes perfect sense to me. Coming out of the recent long recession it is very possible that executive seats are currently being held by people who may not be skilled in engineering change.

5. “Jacks and Janes of all trades” become corporate heroes. After decades of increasing specialization within organizations, businesses will begin to reward the ability to “wear multiple hats.” Corporate leaders are recognizing that in a downsized business environment, employees need to handle an increasing number of diverse tasks. What’s more, Millennials entering the workforce are resisting specialization, instead opting for career opportunities that offer broad experiences.

“The business environment is more competitive than ever, and companies are looking at all factors that can give them an edge, including how to attract, keep, and motivate their employees,” said Halley Bock, CEO and president of Fierce.

We certainly agree and because of the high demand are offering the Engagement, Retention and Growth training program again in May 2013. Engaging Employees to Champion Change and filling the right seats with the right employees are topics offered packed with common sense, actionable solutions.

For more information on the Engagement, Retention and Growth 2013 Training Summit, go to .

Copyright TIGERS Success Series by Dianne Crampton

About TIGERS Success Series

TIGERS Success Series is a team development consultancy based on 6 core principles that anchor high performance team dynamics. These principles are trust, interdependence, genuineness, empathy, risk and success. TIGERS offers licensing and certification to team building trainers and consultants interested in expanding their practice to serve organizational leaders from the break room to the boardroom. Lean more,