Talent Management is complicated. Much like a puzzle, it has many interlocking pieces.
In last week’s blog post, we examined the hiring process, how most organizations still use an outdated and shortsighted hiring process that relies too heavily on past experience and job titles. Of course, it’s impossible to describe the current business climate, the challenges, and the tactics to implementing an integrated Talent Management strategy in a 500-word blog entry. But the general thought was that ability is more than just past job titles. To hire top talent, organizations must look at passion, work ethic, vision, people skills, and the ability to learn new things.
So is that it? Is an effective Talent Management process simply updating job descriptions and seeing if people can hold a pleasant conversation during lunch? Of course not!
So what other business matters must an organization consider as they take a Talent Management approach to their workforce? While there are too many considerations to discuss here, several items (in no particular order), when proactively tackled, can help an organization attract, develop, retain, and utilize top talent.
It’s everything! Corporate culture, which we’ve explored several times in previous blogs, is the single most important driver of business and Talent Management success. Without a healthy corporate culture, no Talent Management program will succeed. Part of building a strong corporate culture is making sure all employees know the mission, the values, and the behaviors that demonstrate those values and then holding people accountable to those values and behaviors. As former IBM CEO Lou Gerstner said in his book Who Says Elephants Can’t Dance, “ . . . culture isn’t just one aspect of the game, it is the game.”
People born between 1984 and 2000 are part of the amazing Millennial generation. These workers think differently, are certainly tech-savvy, and want to be part of a change-the-world organization. Effectively integrating these younger workers with previous generations (Traditionalists, Baby Boomers, and Gen Xers) is not easy but with deliberate thought, these workers can push your organization to higher levels of success and be a fantastic source of future company leaders. For more thoughts regarding Millennials, check this PCC blog entry.
The world is changing and the pace of that change in quickening. Although change is difficult for most people, being able to embrace organizational (and individual) change is yet another piece of the Talent Management landscape as well as a competitive advantage. J.C. Penney Chairman Mike Ullman said at Fortune’s recent Global Forum, “Only a baby with a wet diaper likes change.” So an integrated Talent Management process is one that, with speed and urgency, embraces organizational change and helps workers flourish in the midst of this change.
While being able to move quickly as an organization has always been an important characteristic, it’s one of the most valuable business strategies a company can implement today. I don’t mean reviewing resumes in six seconds and filling an open position as quickly as possible as mentioned in my previous blog. But making swift decisions and being a nimble organization is surely a competitive advantage. Fast Company editor Robert Safian wrote in the December 2015 issue, “Because the changes are coming so fast, there is a rising premium on our ability to adjust, to be adaptable in new ways. This can be scary for some, but it is also undeniably exciting, and for those prepared to embrace this emerging reality, the possibilities are tantalizing.”
Internal Customer Service & Communication
The level of customer service you can provide externally is only as good as what you deliver internally. And making sure executives, department heads, supervisors, and even frontline workers are communicating across lines will help keep everyone lined up with corporate goals and will also facilitate the internal movement of high potential employees. So break down those internal silos and start promoting cross-corporate partnerships!
Talent Management & Executive Management Alignment
Many HR organizations develop and manage their Talent Management process in response to corporate goals and strategies. Instead, make sure HR and Talent Management are aligned with C-level executives, top-line business objectives, and, of course, the corporate mission statement.
Each of the above business components – and there are additional elements – is complicated and deserves much more thought than one paragraph. The point is this: For Talent Management to be more than buzzwords and to truly be a strategy that drives business success, organizations must address more than just job descriptions and leadership training.
A tall order? Yes! But for the organizations that take the time and effort to confront the above issues along with the Talent Acquisition thoughts posted earlier will grab the best talent and help dispel the Talent Management myth.
Darren K. Ford
I've enjoyed a great career. Worked in many different industries with great coworkers and customers. I talk to a lot of people while drinking a lot of coffee. I read constantly. From all of this, I have much to say.