3 Steps to Better Leverage Talent Management

Drawing of a seesaw on the blackboard with three stick figures outweighing machine gears

Smart leaders know that their success depends on the success of their team. No matter what business you are in, how you attract, develop, engage and retain talent matters.

Our organizational alignment research tells us that talent accounts for 29% of the difference between high and low performing organizations. Without an engaged and productive workforce, your organization will not perform at its peak. People can be your competitive advantage when you learn how to leverage talent management for business success.

Leadership plays an all-important role in setting the stage for attracting, developing, engaging and retaining the employees an organization needs to execute its strategy. But when you look to which department should enable leadership’s directives, it is Human Resources. Sadly, however, many HR departments are not truly sitting at the executive table and miss the opportunity to have a meaningful impact on the business. This should and must change. And the ball is in HR’s court.

Why?

Because companies that excel in topics such as behavior change, employee engagement, organizational culture, management practices, talent management and leadership do far better financially than companies that are weak in those areas. So HR can directly contribute to the bottom line when they are working in sync with their organization’s overall strategy.

To earn a position of credibility and respect at the executive level, HR folks need to align and quantify workforce performance.

  1. Ensure Clear, Compelling and Implementable Business Strategies.
    First, HR must deeply understand the business strategy. Strategic clarity accounts for 31% of the difference between high and low performing organizations. For any talent management strategy to be effective, it must be 100% aligned with the business strategy. HR must understand where the business is going and how it intends to get there if they are going to create meaningful workforce management strategies.
  2. Create an Aligned and High Performing Organizational Culture.
    Secondly, HR should help ensure that the  organizational culture is 100% aligned with the business strategy. High performing cultures account for 40% of the difference between high and low performing companies. HR should play a critical role in ensuring the way people think, behave and work drives the strategy forward and creates a foundation for successfully attracting, developing, engaging and retaining top talent that fits.
  3. Differentiate Your Talent.
    Lastly, HR should design a clear talent management strategy to attract, develop, engage and retain the desired employees needed to drive the business forward in accordance with the desired high performance culture required to set people up for success.

    Top people leaders know different talent contributes differently to every organization. Because of this, strategic HR leaders make sure that their workforce strategy aligns with their unique organizational culture and business strategy instead of relying on the external best practices of other companies. Especially for companies that rely on their people to succeed, business results depend on designing and implementing the right talent strategy for your unique situation.

When HR learns to prioritize and focus on the activities that are most urgent and will have the greatest impact on driving business results, they will be able to allot their investments strategically. They will likely find a need to emphasize and support talent management, build leadership capabilities and enhance employee engagement. HR can contribute meaningfully to the business strategy on the front end. Then, using people analytics to guide them toward fruitful people management processes, they can use lagging indicators to measure the impact and value of talent vis-à-vis the strategic goals.

Download Talent Whitepaper: 1/3rd of the Talent Management Recipe for Success

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