Talent management experts Lance Berger and Dorothy Berger explain how to build a high-performing workforce by creating a strong talent management framework.
Successful organizations systematically design, integrate, and proactively implement programs that build and sustain a high-performance workforce. These programs typically focus on the acquisition, cultivation, positioning, and rewarding of employees who can best achieve their goals for sustainable excellence while remaining true to their stated values.
When their approach to building a high-performing workforce is fully integrated and codified it is labeled talent management. Based on our research, consulting assignments, and the input of recognized experts, we conclude that the core talent management framework required for creating a high-performance workforce consists of three elements.
- A blueprint that articulates the principles that guide the organization’s strategic and tactical talent management processes. It consists of a talent management creed and strategy. A creed is composed of a widely publicized set of core principles, values, and mutual expectations that guide the behavior of an organization and its people. Collectively, the stated principles depict the type of culture an organization strives to create to achieve its unique portrait for success. The principles of the creed are embedded into its talent management strategy, building blocks and programs through incorporating its doctrines into selection criteria, competency definitions, performance criteria, internal selection and development processes, and all other relevant human resources policies and programs. A talent strategy makes explicit the types of people in whom the organization will invest. The biggest investments will be made in people who are currently contributing the most to organizational success and to those seen as having the potential for making strong contributions in the future.
- A set of building blocks that translate a talent creed and strategy into assessment tools that classify employees based on their current and potential contribution to the organization. These classifications are necessary to implement a talent management strategy. There are three building blocks: competency evaluation, performance appraisals, and potential assessment.
- A talent management system that incorporates building blocks into talent management implementation programs (positioning, enhancement, mobility, and compensation). The individual programs are integrated into a unified approach for making decisions regarding the people who exemplify the culture expressed in the creed, who are currently contributing the most to organizational success, and who are seen as making strong contributions in the future.
Although there are a variety of approaches to talent management our recent experience and research indicate that the best approach is one that is grounded in the three iterative, integrated, and codified cited above.
Lance A. Berger is managing partner of Lance A. Berger & Associates, Ltd. He is a recognized authority specializing in compensation, talent management, and change management. He co-wrote and co-edited the first and second editions of The Talent Management Handbook the third, fourth, fifth, and sixth editions of The Compensation, Handbook, Management Wisdom from the New York Yankees’ Dynasty, The Change Management Handbook, and Deengineering the Corporation.
Dorothy R. Berger is a partner of Lance A. Berger & Associates, Ltd. She coordinates all organizational activities for the firm and is also a talent management consultant. She co-wrote and co-edited the first and second editions of The Talent Management Handbook, the fourth, fifth, and sixth editions of The Compensation Handbook, Management Wisdom from the New York Yankees’ Dynasty, The Change Management Handbook and Deengineering the Corporation.