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Tips for preparing for the skills shortage: Stem the talent exodus

In 'Workforce Crisis,' the authors join social scientists in warning of a labor and skills shortage and offer tips on how to stem the tide.

If you manage people, Workforce Crisis warns you to prepare for major demographic shifts. Authors Ken Dychtwald, Tamara Erickson and Robert Morison join a growing chorus of social scientists who argue that a labor and skills shortage in the U.S. is coming. Declining birthrates, a retiring baby-boomer generation and increasingly competitive labor markets could drive out experienced, older workers before they've been replaced.

How to stem this outgoing tide? For retirement-age workers, firms should offer flextime and retiree-return programs. For midcareer workers -- those most likely to be frustrated by stalling careers and dissatisfying work -- companies should create new assignments and offer mentoring. And to retain younger employees -- who are most prone to workplace wanderlust -- bosses should be prepared to offer hands-on experience and exciting work right away. If you buy the theory of an impending labor crisis, this book helps manage skills so they don't walk out the door. ($29.95, 268 pages)

Lauren Horwitz, former managing editor, production, for CIO Decisions, is now managing editor for TechTarget's Data Center Media Group. Write to her at

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