How to Link Your Talent Management Strategy to Your Business Strategy

Org chart showing how to Link Your Talent Management Strategy to Your Business Strategy

Link Your Talent Management Strategy to Your Business Strategy
We believe that the purpose of talent management is to have the right person in the right role at the right time.  When you accomplish this, you have a far greater chance of achieving your business strategy in a way that makes sense.

Why The Link Between the Business and Talent Matters
Our organizational alignment research found that talent accounts for 29% of the difference between high and low performing companies in terms of revenue, profitability and customer loyalty.  The catch?  The 29% impact of talent gets severely diluted if your strategy and culture are not aligned.

The good news?  When business and talent strategies are linked, you are more than two times more likely to outperform your competitors on total shareholder returns.  So the alignment of people with your business is not only more efficient, it has a direct impact on your bottom line.

How to Link Your Talent Management Strategy to Your Business Strategy
Savvy leaders understand why linking talent management to clear business priorities matters but few know how to do this effectively.  In trying to assess which employees are most critical to current and future business priorities and what role they play, many leaders simply refer to the corporate organizational chart.  But often, the most critical and strategic talent is not found on the top level org. chart.  There is a better and far more effective way.

This is how to align your talent decisions with their value to the business strategy so you link your talent management to your business strategy:

1. Start with Your Business Strategy
Take a ruthless look at your plan for business success. Is it clear enough?  Compelling enough?  Implementable enough in your unique culture and marketplace?  If not, you have some strategic clarity work to do before you begin to build a talent strategy.

Once your business strategy is clear enough, it is time to forecast the talent you need to fill current and future mission-critical roles.  You should be able to answer questions like:

  • Do you currently have the right talent in the right place to meet current objectives?
  • Do you have the bench strength to meet future objectives?
  • How do you plan to fill the gaps? Build internally? Borrow from outside consultants or contractors? Hire from the outside??

2. Think Key Roles
Where is the greatest potential for business growth? And what skills are needed to take advantage of the opportunity?  Ask each business leader to articulate what it is that their team contributes to the business strategy and then to identify the roles most critical to that contribution.  This information should inform your decisions about hiring, onboarding, performance management, retention, and succession planning.

3. Evaluate Talent
Now it’s time to find the right talent for the key roles that matter most. With your “ideal profile” for each crucial role in hand, you can be objective about job candidates.  Talent selection should not be made by guess or gut.  It should be made by thoughtful analysis of what skills are needed.

If, for instance, your business strategy calls for a greater focus on the customer, you need customer-facing employees and everyone that supports them focused on delivering relationship-based experiences characterized by long-term individual connections.

4. Make Adjustments
Whether you now need to change job descriptions and profiles, hire new employees, provide targeted training, or re-assign current employees, make the talent adjustments that align to your strategies for business success. And then keep vigilant.

Things will change.  You need to be prepared to re-think your talent as needs and markets shift.

The Bottom Line
As a leader, you need to ensure that your talent is positioned to achieve your current and future business goals.  Any misalignment will dilute your chances to perform at your peak.

To learn more about how to link your talent management strategy to your business strategy, download Why Talent Is Surprisingly Only 1/3rd of the Talent Management Recipe for Success

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