The Answer to Boosting Talent Is Probably Not Training

boosting talent a compass points to the word "Answers"

How to Boost Talent and Performance
Let’s say you have been charged with boosting talent and performance at your organization. Now let’s also say that there is a hiring freeze so you have to lift the capabilities of your current talent pool. Most assume (to the collective tune of over $100 billion spent on corporate training per year) that the best course of action is to conduct more training programs.

But We Are Here to Tell You that Training by Itself Is NOT the Answer
Yes, we are a consulting and training company. And yes, we believe deeply in the power of improving skills, changing behaviors and increasing performance. So why do we believe that training alone is not the answer to increase performance?

A 25% ROI is Not High Enough
Because we have completed over 800 training measurement projects and learned that only 1-in-5 people change their behavior from training alone.  In general, for training to work, it must have high relevance, clear success metrics, identified skills and behaviors, targeted goals, effective training measurement, consistent performance monitoring and frequent coaching..

Otherwise, corporate training is just an exercise in “checking the box” and spending hard-earned money and limited time with no real business impact or performance return. Ideally, training, just like any other business investment, should be conducted only when it can deliver meaningful business results that matter.

Talent Accounts for 29% of the Difference
Our organizational alignment research found that talent (how you attract develop, engage and retain people) accounts for 29% of the difference between high and low performing organizations. Investing in developing a workforce that can create a unique advantage for your company is certainly smart. But you need to do it right.

5 Steps to Better Assess and Grow Talent
Assess and grow your talent by following these proven steps:

1.  Start with Strategic Business Clarity
Evaluate your strategic business priorities and be clear about the specific business metrics you want to move. Otherwise you are operating in the dark with no business priorities to tie to your talent management or training strategies.  If your business strategy is unclear, make some key assumptions and move forward as best you can.

2.  Create a Talent Management Strategy that is Aligned with the Business Strategy
Once your business strategy is as clear as you can make it, focus on creating an aligned talent management strategy – how you attract, develop, engage and retain talent that fits your unique situation. Take a close look at and prioritize the most important current and future strategic jobs, skills, and people.  Then make sure your plans fit your unique organizational culture and how work truly gets done.

3.  Focus on Talent Contribution
An effective talent management strategy focuses on how your unique approach to talent will accelerate your strategic plan in a way that thrives within your workplace norms. Gain agreement from all stakeholders on how your current and future employees will best contribute to your company’s competitive advantage. Then create a believable and implementable plan with those responsible for implementing it to make it happen.

4.  Be Strategic About Talent Development
Plan an overall talent development approach that includes a training needs assessment of current talent, a development program to support critical skill gaps, and the building of leadership and management skills that can sustain high performance through reinforcement and coaching. You need both a short- and long-term plan that integrates people practices with business priorities.

5.  Differentiate Your Top Talent
Top companies know that different people contribute differently to organizational success and wisely treat top people differently. Make sure that you disproportionately invest in your high value and high potential employees. High potential and high performing employees are the ones who can sustain your competitive advantage.

  • Ensure they feel valued for their contributions.
  • Make them feel special.
  • Keep them challenged, engaged and retained.

The Bottom Line
Boosting talent matters to your people and your business.  Don’t be the organization that continues to waste training dollars each year on learning and development programs that fail to produce tangible behavior change or business results.

To learn more about strategies for boosting talent, Read the Top 5 Training Function Mistakes to Avoid at All Costs

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LSA’s consultant designed and delivered a half-day team building solution for our recent conference. It included careful customization to integrate the design with our new mission and values. Everyone had fun and identified key issues with our teamwork. Altogether a great program!

Bob Ward
Director of HR

We partnered with LSA Global to help us invest in our people in the areas of performance coaching, diversity, and inclusion. They focused on helping us succeed and were very flexible in meeting our specific needs. LSA Global exceeded my expectations from a speed, quality, and value standpoint. I would recommend LSA Global to anyone looking for a true business partner.

Anita Luckinbill
Director, Human Resources

I am very impressed with the quality of work and talent. LSA did a great job of listening to my needs and providing the exact management training program expertise I needed to get the job done.

Don Pryor
Director, Business Planning & Analysis

I’ve been associated with LSA for the last 8 years and have found them to be an extremely professional, well managed full service training organization. Since working with LSA, I’ve participated in a number of solutions ranging from Performance Management to Assertiveness Training – I’ve found that the quality of the resources is superior. They are well prepared and have definitely done a considerable amount of pre-work in order to customize our culture and business into the total learning experience – making it most beneficial for our employees.

Duane Schroeder
Human Resource Manager

What a refreshing change from the half-baked psycho-babble you normally get from training and consulting organizations. LSA gives you the practical and results-oriented assistance you need to define and reach your goal.  They provide a results driven plan – not just a temporary fix. They are great to work with, and even more importantly, they “get it!”

David Fiano
Vice President Human Resources

LSA exceeded all my expectations. We interviewed 7 potential training and consulting partners and selected LSA due to their expertise, flexibility, and breadth and depth of solutions. We were able to construct a management training course from the modules most appropriate to our needs, and are able to provide additional training from their well developed portfolio of experts. Our managers galvanized as a team throughout the session and are better prepared for the rigors of a competitive market.

Mitch Mandich
CEO

Edify

I continue to be impressed by the level of leadership development and management expertise and quality of advice and facilitation that LSA has to offer. What a smart and client-centric group of great people who really know how to help leaders attract, engage, develop and retain top talent.

Tracy Esposito
Director, HR Business Partner

The Next Generation Management Development courses have helped me communicate more effectively with my peers and teammates. By utilizing effective communication techniques such as clarifying and confirming, and asking open ended questions, I have been able to clarify and understand information in situations where I would have otherwise asked limited questions and made false assumptions.

Robert Breckner
Firmware Engineering Manager

LSA is an instrumental training outsourcing partner in helping us to build management capacity and strategically invest in our people. Their flexibility, depth, and breadth of expertise allows us to deliver top quality solutions that are directly tied to key business plans. Their ability to custom design, deliver, and evaluate our Management Curriculum has been excellent. They are true business partners and a pleasure to work with.

Margaret M. Mader
Vice President, Human Resources

Hyperion

The refreshing thing about LSA is that they focus on understanding our business situation and helping me succeed instead of selling a product. With over 150 experts, they are an invaluable resource that helps me deliver higher quality results faster. I recommend them to anyone looking to improve the performance of their workforce.

Stacie Rodgers
VP of Human Resources

Cutera

I’ve partnered with LSA Global at two companies now, and I consider them a valuable and trusted training and consulting resource. They recommended just the right solution to address our management development needs and have wonderful facilitators that match YuMe’s culture and style of our management team. I would highly recommend LSA Global to any company wanting to deliver quality learning solutions with a valuable learning and development partner.

Maya Paul
HR Director

The Managing Virtual Teams program was extremely valuable. Your consultant/ facilitator’s fundamental knowledge of Synopsys as a company provided an incredible base to build upon while tackling the complications of managing and working with globally distributed teams. My team walked away walked away with highly useful practices and tools. It was an excellent use of our time.

Debra Martucci
Vice President, Information Technology

VNUS Medical has been very pleased with the effective management development programs that LSA Global has delivered for us over the last four years. The programs have been universally facilitated by experienced and best in class instructors. The knowledge gained by our management team has been put into practice very quickly. VNUS is very happy to be working in partnership with LSA because they consistently deliver excellent programs that receive exceptional feedback from our management team.

Cindee Van Vleck
Director Human Resources

In my years working with LSA, it seems like I’ve had a personal consultant at my fingertips to help me identify just the right solution to satisfy our needs. The entire LSA team has become a trusted friend of Actel — assuring we provide state-of-the-art learning to meet our complex, high-tech business and people needs.

Linda Mitchell
Training Manager

The LSA Global team was very receptive and flexible to our needs every step of the way. Their staff and facilitator demonstrated attention to detail, responsiveness, and professional courtesy. The participants were thrilled with the outcome and rated the communication skills workshop and the facilitator as ‘Excellent’. I’d highly recommend working with the LSA Global team to meet your professional development needs.

John Mastrorilli
FRDP Leader

Intuit

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