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At the ULI Spring Conference last week, I participated in a presentation that focused on recruiting, retention and related compensation issues. During the course of the meeting, the conversation turned to the industry brain drain–caused in the 1990s by the lack of new talent. This situation is exacerbated by the huge bubble of talented baby-boomers beginning to retire. Every company represented in the meeting commented on the difficulty they are experiencing in recruiting mid-level professionals. “The talent is just not out there,” was the common cry. Further, it emerged that the next phase of the problem would be the most critical. That is, the growing gap in senior and executive-level talent. This problem can only accelerate over the next five years when the boomers are out the door and there is no next generation to fill the ranks of top management. It’s simple math: there will be greater demand than supply, and companies better begin planning now if they want to fill those corner offices.

Tony LoPinto is CEO of Equinox Partners, an executive search firm specializing in the real estate industry, and parent company of SelectLeaders. The views expressed in this article are the author’s own.
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