What Is Your Talent Management Strategy?
Ask any organizational leader to name their company’s greatest strength and you may hear the reply: “Our People.” Yet for many, the process of recruiting, on-boarding, training, coaching, developing, retaining, and growing their people is at worst, largely ignored and at best ad hoc. There’s a better way.
The process of “talent management” is coming into sharper focus as organizations of all sizes grapple with a rapidly changing external environment and ever-evolving ideas of what constitutes a “high performance” workplace.
While few will deny the importance of talented, committed team members, getting there remains a challenge. One thing is certain. Achieving this ideal requires focus and attention at the highest level of the organization. Just as strategic business development is not simply a “sales issue,” the process of “talent management” is not the sole responsibility of “HR.” The importance and impact of a highly developed, cohesive team is far too great to be delegated.
The concept of “Topgrading;” first brought to the attention of many business leaders by Brad and Geoff Smart, outlines a comprehensive, detailed process for identifying, interviewing, and hiring “A” players. As exhaustive as the process is, the concept is explained in three words: Pursue, Recruit, and Cut.
The pursuit of top-level talent is an all-the-time thing. High performing executives compile and maintain a short list of candidates. Much like a business development professional knows their target accounts, C-Suite executives view their talent prospect list as a high priority. This list is compiled in many ways; networking at business and industry events, leveraging contacts, and staying connected (handwritten notes work wonders here).
Recruiting activities are measured by the amount of time that is scheduled and invested in the recruitment process. Blocking out time on the calendar for this important activity is a reliable indicator of just how high a priority it really is.
Cutting refers to the process of conducting honest, ongoing assessments of your current team members relative to the standards of performance and behavior your organization maintains. This third step is often the most difficult of all. However, if the aim is to “Topgrade” the entire organization, this painful but necessary step cannot be overlooked.
For more information on ways you can improve your organization’s talent level and performance, contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Joseph P. Truncale, Ph.D., CAE, is the Founder and Principal of Alexander Joseph Associates, a privately held consultancy specializing in executive business advisory services with clients throughout the graphic communications industry.
Joe spent 30 years with NAPL, including 11 years as President and CEO. He is an adjunct professor at NYU teaching graduate courses in Executive Leadership; Financial Management and Analysis; Finance for Marketing Decisions; and Leadership: The C Suite Perspective. He may be reached at Joe@ajstrategy.com. Phone or text: (201) 394-8160.