‘Talent management’ is one of those phrases that’s getting a lot of air play, and debates about this topic have a tendency to get over-complicated and tangled.
It’s hard enough to attract high-performing candidates to join your organisation; it’s even tougher getting them to stay. But the HR directors we interviewed for this week’s talent management special report advocate keeping it simple. There is no magic formula for retaining your top performers, but they offer practical suggestions for keeping them on board. Primarily it’s about stimulating and challenging them and making sure the job plays to their strengths, and it’s about being straightforward and honest when offering feedback. It’s also about giving praise where it’s due and coaching when they fall short – basically, valuing them as individuals.
What isn’t so simple for HR is making sure that companies cater for the exceptionally talented without alienating or upsetting everyone else. And that doesn’t just mean managing downwards. When high performers emerge from the latest development initiative with more talent than their own bosses, what happens then? Unless they can engage with their current leaders then that investment in their development could all be wasted.
The struggle to achieve this balance is prompting some of the most creative thinking in HR today.
Employment law drives change
A survey out this week from the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development and Lovells suggests that employers are feeling the ever-increasing burden of employment law. Companies say they don’t have enough time or resources to cope with it all.
The flip side of that, as switched-on HR professionals realise, is that employment law has helped to effect real change, encourage good people management and champion best practice in the workplace. Employees working without fear of discrimination on the grounds of disability, race or gender would certainly agree with that.