Should talent management programmes be aimed at a select few or should we define everyone within organisations as talent? Clearly there are a number of issues associated with taking a more narrow approach. Cultural background and lack of confidence, for instance, can mean individuals are overlooked or deselect themselves. And failing to effectively deal with those people who don’t make it onto talent development programmes can lead to reduced motivation and a “them and us” mentality. On the other hand, now, more than ever, organisations are expecting more from less and need to ensure that they have the right people in the right jobs.
Judging from a session I joined at the “Hands on Talent” focus day at the CIPD’s HRD 2011 conference, these questions are very much on the minds of HR professionals. It’s clear that there is unlikely to ever be a one-size-fits-all approach but in a short brainstorming session delegates did come up with a list of key components for a successful talent management programme that I think are worth sharing:
• Transparency, fairness and good communication are essential.
• Ensure there is buy-in from the CEO.
• Communicate a clear definition of what the programme is and that it has the support of the CEO/board.
• Have clear selection criteria, defined from the start.
• Ensure you have an effective performance management system and equip line managers with the tools they need to deliver on it.
• Use role models and share successes.
• Don’t over-promise or under-deliver.
• Analyse the future capability needs of your organisation to ensure your programme meets those needs.
• Ensure there is a commercial return on investment.
• Continuously review your programme.
Claire Warren, People Management