Challenges in leadership are more significant than ever. With 85% of businesses feeling the effects of the ‘great resignation’, filling the leadership skills gap and finding the right candidate for the job can be difficult.

Even if they hold the suitable skill set, are they the right fit for you? With only 48% of employees viewing their leadership as ‘high quality’, something needs to change. To help you break down the barriers and find the right leadership candidate, this blog will take you through some of the top challenges in leadership hiring and how you can solve them with one solution.


1. Adequate Skillset

One of the biggest challenges in leadership hiring is finding a candidate with the relevant skills for the position. No two businesses are alike, so it’s highly unlikely you’ll be able to find the person that ticks every box.

But that doesn’t mean you can’t find a successful candidate. While they might not possess every skill you need, look for the ones that matter the most. Remember to focus on hard and soft skills, as the latter greatly impacts whether a leader is a good fit for your company.


2. Relevant Experience

While a candidate may possess the right skills, that doesn’t mean they’ll be instantly transferable to your business. They may have previously worked in a completely different sector or, in some cases, not even held a leadership position before.

You’ll need to spot the characteristics and skills you can nurture and develop, so the person becomes the right person for the job over time. Leaders rarely slot straight into an organisation with success. It takes time and adaptability to succeed.


3. Diversity

The lack of diversity has long plagued leadership teams at some of the world’s largest companies. Only 8% of CEOs are women, whereas 85% of Fortune 500’s CEOs are men and 59% are white — a stark picture in today’s world, which is why change is so important.

Here are some statistics to demonstrate why diversity in leadership is so significant:

  • Companies with racial and ethnic diversity are 36% more likely to outperform their competition.
  • Diverse teams are 87% better decision-makers than individuals operating alone.
  • 43% of companies with diverse management achieved higher profits.
  • It matters for the new workforce generation — 83% of all millennials are more likely to be actively engaged if they believe their company stimulates a diverse and inclusive culture.


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4. Salary Expectations

The right experience and skills often come with a price tag, particularly in a job market experiencing a growing skills gap, so candidates hold more bargaining power. Ultimately, it’s about paying good leaders what they’re worth, so you may need to adjust your salary offering to attract the best talent.

Offering attractive salaries and bonus packages won’t only attract the best candidates, but it'll also help retain them. Research by Indeed found that ‘wanting a better salary’ is one of the top reasons people leave a role. Avoid future challenges in leadership hiring by compensating your employees well for their role..


5. Long Hiring Process

Finding the right candidate takes time, which can be challenging if you need to fill a leadership position quickly. People in senior positions often have long notice periods, which could be weeks before the selected candidate resumes their position.


6. Finding Someone that adds to the culture

Culture is a massive part of a leadership role, so ensuring you find a figure who adds a great deal to your culture for your company is paramount. The right leadership style will greatly impact your business’ growth and success in the future, so it’s not something to ignore.

But again, finding the right culture addition is just as important for employee retention as hiring. Culture determines whether a candidate joins a company and how long they stay.


Fill the Gap by Upskilling Internal Talent

There are many challenges in leadership hiring, some easier to overcome than others. However, one solution to many of these problems is simple — investing in leadership training for your current employees.

Internal training and hiring ensures you develop the skillsets relevant to your business, enhance diversity in leadership, foster a positive workplace culture and shorten the hiring process.

Not only will upskilling internal talent solve your immediate problem, but it also provides many other benefits, including employee motivation and retention, making sure the top talent stays with you. 

Instead of hiring externally for your next leadership vacancy, why not start preparing today by investing in the right training for your leaders of the future?


Identify and Fill Your Leadership and Management skills Gaps

The first step in the right direction will be to understand the leadership skills gaps you need to fill. Our checklist can help you do exactly that. Download today to start investing in your next generation of leaders.

Leadership and Management Checklist

Oliver Simpson

Written by Oliver Simpson