Basically, says Kellaway, this is the time during which the CFO will be treated as king. The time of big personalities at the helm of companies is out of fashion. But so, too, is egalitarianism and the whole subject of empowerment is likewise deep-sixed.
"Management by fiat," says Kellaway, "is going to make a healthy return."
She says not only has the Chief Marketing Officer been lost in the struggle for importance. Now it's the human resources director's turn. No more "war on talent," which so many companies have struggled with, talked about, thrown money against, and never did seem to know how to measure. Instead, it is now all about staffing.
"An old truth will be whispered by the brave: most workers are not terribly talented and most of them don't need to be, as most jobs don't require it. In 2009, a more elitist shift will occur: companies will worry about the performance of those at the top of the pyramid, while everyone else will be managed like a commodity. 'Talent' will be a word to wave goodbye to. In 2009 the word 'staff' will make a comeback, as will 'headcount.'"
Wow, Sounds like the good times of everyone getting coddled, from free lunches for some, to spa stays for others, are out. Doesn't sound like a lot of fun, does it? I'm wondering what the conversations will sound like in the companies Kellaway describes.