October 20, 2017

Are You Smothering and Shushing Your Talent?

Each day I speak with leaders who are in the quest for finding top talent. And…they usually find a way to woo them into the company.

The challenge is this: Once the talent is in the door, it is not uncommon for the leaders and the culture to smother and “shush” this new talent. They expect the moon from them but don’t give them a voice or the room to spread their wings.

This is a prime opportunity for coaching and mentoring. In the future, it is not going to be enough to rely on your own thoughts and past learning to groom future talent. Smart organizations pair their people with top mentors who can educate them about all the ins and outs of not only the job being done but the ins and outs of growth, diversity and how to develop future leaders.

When it comes to developing out young talent, I recommend you look closely at the following:

1) Competency Models. I am all for having standards of performance and competency models. They give people something to strive for. But, many competency models are outdated and promote “sameness” throughout the organization. With young talent, it is critical to design customized developmental programs which will allow young talent to really spread their wings, try on new things and bring fresh ideas into your company.

2) Internal and External Networks. The future belongs to the companies who can successfully develop peer to peer and mentor to peer networks inside the organization and who can master external networks using technology such as Facebook and Twitter. Many companies are now designing their own “internal” forms of Facebook, but in my opinion, this defeats the purpose. The beauty of tools like Facebook and Twitter is that they can give your opportunity the leg up on being able to reach out to brilliant minds who are outside your company for R and D purposes, to collaborate or to even recruit new minds into your company.

3) The Collaboration Process. Do you really have a collaborative spirit inside your company, or do you simply give lip service? New talent thrives on collaboration. They want to know they are a part of creating something much bigger, and it’s truly up to your company to position collaboration on the center stage of your company. Collaboration is not something that happens during a week-end retreat. It is a mindset and a driver which helps to shape your culture. Look at your process closely, and begin today to open up your process so that it becomes deeply ingrained in your company..

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