Although the buzzwords “Talent Management” were first coined more than 15 years ago, many organizations are still searching for ways to attract and retain the best and brightest in order win the talent war.
Attraction is arguably the easiest piece of the talent management equation. However, companies that spend energy creating the perfect cocktail of salary and tailored compensation packages are missing the point for long-term success. High engagement and retention, coupled with developing outstanding leadership skills are the critical elements for gaining the strategic advantage. Conversely, your business will continue to lag behind if any of the following conditions persist:
The cost of poor leadership
The first step in managing talent begins with managing your leaders. One only needs to look at the list of the best places to work; large or small, in virtually every industry sector, to find the common denominator: Dynamic, employee-centric leadership. The correlation between great leadership and a highly engaged workplace is undeniable. Before you invest in developing your leaders, first you must ask yourself whether they are right fit. If you haven’t hired the best leaders, or accepted the significance of their impact on their teams, you cannot expect your people to remain motivated, engaged and productive under the influence of a poor leader.
The cost of disengagement
The plethora of research on this subject should be sufficient evidence in and of itself for organizations to take action, yet businesses of every description continue to struggle with high levels of disengagement. Key performance indicators including return on equity, return on sales, new hires, absenteeism, turnover and customer satisfaction can provide invaluable information regarding whether or not your employees are engaged and willing to contribute. However, if there is little opportunity for your people to develop their potential, or to be acknowledged, challenged and supported by their leaders, disengagement will prevail and your talent pool will either actively or passively pursue other opportunities.
The cost of a negative reputation
The newest cohort of talent closely scrutinizes the image and reputation of a prospective employer. They do their homework and are often extremely knowledgeable when it comes to understanding the state of your industry, your organization’s performance in relation to your competitors, the dynamics of your senior leadership, the level of respect and participation within your community; including causes that your business supports either financially or through volunteerism at every level. Above all, this sought-after group of future leaders operates with a new paradigm and won’t tolerate anything less than parity when assessing company performance on the entire spectrum of diversity.
In summary, remember that although the tangible motivators (pay and benefits) will attract talent to your organization; it is the intangible motivators of communication, collaboration and culture that are often the most neglected. When your leaders understand and execute on delivering these three powerful motivators, they will be in a stronger position to win the proverbial “talent war”.
About the author
Based in Vancouver, Canada, Michelle Ray is a leadership expert, motivational speaker, CEO and founder of the Lead Yourself First Institute. Michelle is the author of Lead Yourself First! Indispensable Lessons in Business and in Life.
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