Is your organization a Talented Organization?
At a time when organizations are grappling with multiple challenges from all possible directions and their very survival could be questioned, one factor which can make an organization succeed is the Talent Factor. Henry Ford understood the Talent Factor very well and he said, “You can take my factories, burn up my buildings, but give me my people and I’ll build the business right back again”. Organizations can take pride in their technology, process, business model, financial status, patents, ideas, investments, legacy, artificial intelligence and more, but those organizations which take pride in their Talent First are the ones which are succeeding. While pride is important it should be backed by a set of systematic actions to nurture a Talent Culture to enable Talent First and this will make the organization a Talented Organization. Talented? Yes, mostly we are the ones who are asked to share about out Talents & Strengths. But for a change, let us ask whether our organizations are Talented in being able to take pride and take actions to nurture talent?
- What’s the definition of Talent in Your Organization? The meaning for the word Talent has transitioned from unit of weight to unit of money to special ability and now to refer those who have the special ability or aptitude. The definition of Talent can be organization specific or industry specific, could be limited to a group/level or refer to all individuals in an organization or it can be reflective of changing circumstances. While organizations can evolve their own definitions & processes to facilitate leadership development & high potential identification, the critical point is that all employees have to be considered as Talent to ensure that every hire is a Talent Hire.
- Are your Leaders Talent Scouts? While the organization can leverage the HR Function to source and hire talent, the critical task of searching for, identifying, selecting and engaging Talent in an organization will belong to all Leaders. Leaders should be continuously looking for Talent and recognize and nourish talent when they find them. Leaders should not restrict this only to recruiting events but rather be scouting for Talent all the time, as you will never know when you will meet that Talent who can catapult your organization to success.
- Are your Leaders Talent Coaches? While finding Talent is important, developing talent is equally important. Leaders should be focused on developing their talent continuously and helping them to progress continuously. If Talent is not appreciating, the value is lost and Leaders should invest their time, efforts and skills to help their talent appreciate to higher value. While there are many approaches to developing Talent, Coaching is a powerful tool to help Talent become self aware, make their choices and take SMART steps in an empowered way.
- Is your Talent diverse? If organizations want to be Talented, they should focus on nurturing a diverse and multi-generational talent. Diversity in generations, ideas, thoughts, skills, gender, orientation, nationalities and more will make the talent in your organization a priceless factor. It is this diversity that will make your organization unique and competitive in a dynamic business environment.
- What’s your Talent Experience? It is easy to say that you are taking care of your people. But the real test is in the experience right from sending the resume to being an alumnus. When we can choose products & services based on the brand experience, in what way will the Talent Experience be different? It’s about the experience during the Ups & Downs of the organization, when you are the top performer or the bottom performer, when you join or when you stay or when you leave. Talent will join those organizations which take care of all the experiences that they will go through in that organization.
- What’s your Talent Process? Organizations that win the War for Talent are those who are intentional and systematic in managing their Talent. It’s also about differentiating between a generic approach and specific approach, it’s about being able to have in-depth Talent discussions, and when organizations are able to develop a Talent Process specific to their business challenge, industry etc, they are able to develop a competitive advantage and win the war for Talent.
- Is Talent your CEO’s passion? If you see the CEO and your senior most leadership team dedicated to driving the Talent agenda personally including role modelling, making time for Talent actions and leading from the front, then your organization is Talented. Talent Management can be facilitated by Human Resources but it has to be driven by the CEO. Only then it will be powerful and be able to deliver results.
- Is your organization engaging the Hearts & Minds of Talent? An organization can have the best talent in the world, but the question is whether they are able to engage the Hearts & Minds of the Talent in the organization. In the absence of engagement through a unique combination of learning, leadership, culture, benefits, opportunities, growth, job content & more, talent will leave the organization or the environment loses its energy. It’s about creating and nurturing your Talent Culture which will help your talent thrive and succeed.
We can ask many more questions, but these seem to be most critical to me. There could be others based on your organization or situation. It’s about using an Organization Development approach to chart the Talent Journey along with the Leaders and creating an eco system to meet the unique needs of your organization and to give your organization the competitive advantage. If you want to find out whether your organization is Talented ask these questions or if you want to learn how to take your organization on a Talent Journey to become Talented, reach out to me.
The Institute of Organization Development offers an online Talent Management Certification Program (TMCP) for those interested in advancing their careers in the field of Talent Management. This program provides participants with the tools and skills needed to develop an integrated talent management strategy.
The Talent Management Certification Program (TMCP) is offered online over 8 months, 3 hours per month to maximize your development as a Talent Management Professional. Each session is delivered through Gototraining. Our expert faculty provide interactive discussions, examples, tools, guidelines, and resources to enrich your learning.
Ragland Thomas G
Vice President – Global Organization Development & Strategy