Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Pittsburgh's Grand Talent Strategy

At the nadir of the gloomy season, Sweden is expressing grave concern about demographic projections:

Next year, for the first time, young people entering the labour market will be fewer in number than retirees. And for each year after that, new pensioners will exceed young labour market newcomers by about 2,000. Over the next ten years, the Swedish-born population of working age will decline by 100,000. In Europe as a whole, the working-age population will decline by 40 million over the next 40 years. Consequently, a number of European countries have embarked on recruitment drives of various kinds – but not so Sweden, until now.

Pittsburgh faces a similar crisis. The row over the tuition tax highlights the concern about a shrinking and aging population. Today's cities are still paying off yesterday's larger infrastructure. What can be done to increase the numbers residing in the city core?

The second part of the problem is the supply of a well-educated workforce. The talent shortage projections are daunting. Thus, the folks at Dewey & Kaye are spearheading a national search for a CEO who will help the Greater Pittsburgh region secure the employees necessary for continued economic growth.

I think this would be a great challenge for a member of the Burgh Diaspora to tackle. Parochial attitudes have undermined and even informed previous "strategies" employed to bolster the population. The War for Talent is serious business and Pittsburgh is already behind. Safe to say, Border Guard Bobs need not apply.

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