What results should talent management bring?

talent management development

The focus is not only on the interests of the employees; the company also wants to achieve important goals and become more successful with talent management. Talent management should contribute to this from the company’s point of view:

The positions are filled correctly

All positions in the company are continuously and qualitatively well filled. For this reason, the relevant need for action is identified at an early stage in terms of position, function and person.

Succession is assured

When making succession decisions, employees or managers of the company are considered first. In order to exploit talent, managers delegate challenging work content and projects to suitable employees. Because both belong to the corporate culture, talent management is an argument for personnel marketing, and it promotes employee retention.

Employees have their tasks under control

By means of effective development measures and development paths, employees and managers are empowered to get a better grip on their current field of work and to accept and survive new challenges. This makes change processes successful.

Talent management is one of the most challenging HR topics. This is confirmed by the BCG study “Creating People Advantage 2013”, in which more than 2000 managers took part. According to the study, talent management is the most important future HR challenge alongside leadership, but currently brings the least benefit compared to the effort involved. This is not surprising. It is only through many years of experience that success factors have become clear that have a rather indirect effect and affect the quality of the concept.

In the following, four essential factors and the consequences to be derived from them are presented.

1. Talent management affects all employees in the company

Many classical concepts for talent management concentrate on the “high potentials” and the “goldfish pond” in which the next generation of managers and perhaps successors for important expert functions swim. This has catastrophic consequences, as the workforce is divided into three groups:

Group 1, the smallest group, is in the pond and satisfied for the time being;
Group 2 wants to go in, but doesn’t come in and struggles;
Group 3 is the largest group; it is made up of simple employees, especially older employees, who understand the “hidden message” very well: they are second-class employees – necessary, but unimportant for the future.

The self-esteem of employees in the third group is permanently damaged. That’s why talent management must be designed for all employee groups. In addition to clear nomination procedures, there are ways to nominate yourself, also via orientation seminars or development centers, and it must be promoted that you are included in the “pools” of talent management.

2. Talent management begins at the lowest management level

It is not only in times of flat hierarchies that vertical developments, also known as careers, are limited. Moreover, due to their size, many companies do not have parallel hierarchies, for example for managers, specialists, project managers or system integrators. When talent management is only about careers, the company puts itself under pressure, because career expectations are always greater than career opportunities.

At almost every position, even at lower levels, there are always new, challenging tasks, participation in (cross-departmental) projects or (horizontal) changes to other positions or areas. These are development opportunities for all employees. Talent management therefore does not only consist of succession planning, but also solves a fit problem: How do the expectations of the company and the expectations of the employee best fit together?

Talent management is a management principle that every employee should experience in concrete terms in his or her work. If it is implemented comprehensibly at the employee level, it increases employee loyalty, especially among new employees.

3. There are losers in talent management

Careers, but also horizontal developments, are good for the affected employees and good for the company, which can now quickly fill open positions with people whom you can trust and who are already at home in the company. In addition to unrecognised employees who believe they are more suitable, the losing manager is the “loser”; he loses perhaps the best employee and now has to plug this “hole”. The gau is created when the vacancy that has become vacant may not be filled again.

The leaving executives bear the “costs” and experience shows that most of them fight against it with all means. If this problem is not solved in talent management, then resistance and friction losses are high. Cooperation with HR is damaged and dominated by tactical games.

4. Correctly assess employee potential and personnel requirements

How well the potential target of an employee is assessed does not depend on the differentiation of a competence model and the IT-supported evaluation. It is much more important to guide managers through assessment processes that are geared to the requirements of specific target positions. Assessing potential is a management task that cannot be delegated, because whoever is responsible for achieving goals must also be responsible for selecting resources.

An equally great challenge is to determine future quantitative and qualitative personnel requirements from business plans and strategies and then make personnel-relevant decisions that usually produce costs. This is also the task of the managers, who are also supported by the HR department.

Published by Dave John

Decade of work experience in leadership consulting with strong focus on talent acquisition & assessment across different industries and geographies.

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