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

Comments are closed.

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

LSA’s approach and ability to bring the best resources to eBay has been a great asset. They really focus on helping us succeed in any way they can and are very flexible in meeting our management and talent needs.

Mike Normant
Learning & Development

ebay

On behalf of Roche and my staff I would like to sincerely thank you for your help with this. The English as a Second Language (ESL) assessment and coaching that you provided for our team was a great success.

Cam Greig
Associate Director

Roche

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

For our go to training outsourcing partner, LSA provides exactly what we want. As always, they deliver outstanding work!

Elizabeth Siebert
Director, Organizational Excellence & Development

Intuit

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

Our company engaged LSA to do a specialized “train the trainer” program, and the consultant’s performance outdid our exceptionally high standards for such a program. Very crucial to the success of this program was the work done upfront to discuss our needs and to interview key members of our organization so that the program specifically met our goals. Our facilitators continue to comment on the success of the program. Thanks also for the follow-up.

Frank Abbott
Chief Financial Officer

What a personal and professional pleasure it has been to Partner with LSA. They are truly a strategic partner with Wyse. For more than 5 years, LSA has been engaged in delivering various training and development solutions for Wyse, from custom on-site programs targeting specific core competencies, to working individually with clients to build job skills, and offering invaluable services to me and my team as we continue to build our learning programs. LSA’s representatives do more than sell a product, they offer a full service solution: they understand our business, our strategic initiatives, and the needs of our customers.

Jeff Rangel
Director of HR

LSA provided top notch solutions right when and how we needed them. They exceeded my expectations from a speed, quality, and cost standpoint. I recommend them to anyone looking for a true business partner in the Learning and Development arena. The breadth and depth of their expertise has helped us hit tight deadlines across multiple projects.

Fortune 500 Financial Services Company
Director of Infrastructure & Technology

We contacted LSA to help us with customized management development. LSA worked with me to identify a solution that would meet our exact needs. We decided to start at the top and ran the program for our executive team. It was such a great success that we hope to roll it out companywide. We look forward to a long-term partnership with LSA Global and their team of experts.

Barry L. Byrd, SPHR
Human Resources Manager

Here’s a token of my appreciation for ALL your efforts. I’m offering my most sincere appreciation, and it extends to all the folks who made our customized management development programs possible.

Susan Anderson
Workforce Planning Bureau

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

We consider LSA Global our outsourced learning and development partner. We worked closely with LSA to customize a management development program to meet our growing business needs. I would highly recommend LSA to any company wanting to deliver quality learning solutions.

Terri Wright-Scheer
Vice President Human Resources

Harmonic has worked with LSA for over 8 years. We have found their partnership extremely beneficial. We recently implemented a Management Development Program that was designed and customized to support our company’s strategic initiative of hiring, building, and retaining key intellectual property and human talent. We worked closely with LSA to target and implement the right solutions with the greatest impact. I would recommend LSA to any company that’s looking for a trusted training and development partner.

Janice Passarello
Director of Human Resources

We value our relationship with LSA Global. We came to LSA because we wanted to improve overall behavioral based interviewing capabilities of our managers to increase the probability of both hiring top talent and future leaders. LSA designed a highly customized solution for our business and culture. We are currently rolling out this solution to our leaders. I would highly recommend LSA Global as a top quality resource.

Rae Phillips
HR Project Manager - Training & Development, PHR

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