In my post of October 27 on "The Human advantage" I talked about a survey conducted by the Boston Consulting Group which asked 2,000 HR Directors about their priorities. They placed talent management as a top priority, meaning identifying potential talent, training employees and then retaining them. The biggest difficulty today is identifying talent, as the concept of talent is changing. According to Jean-Marie Perretti in the magazine "Entreprises et Carrieres' of November 29, "The preferred model for talent few years ago was that of a 30-35 years old executive from a reputable university, who was successful in his first two positions and followed a very specific career path in order to get higher management position." Nowadays, it seems that we should move from a talent search close minded idea to an open one, integrating diversity, social background and work experience instead of focusing on diplomas and age. There is no age for talent. Someone can show talent at age 20, such as Rimbaud, and waste everything by 50. Conversely, someone can also show achievements with more seniority. Knowledge acquired after a long time with a company often brings humility and the ability to stand back and listen to others. This can turn the person with seniority into a natural leader capable of becoming an effective director.
Talent is everywhere, the difficulty today lies in identifying the right kind. Talent is a complex chemistry that combines personal history, a great capacity for analysis and contextualization, the ability to listen, respect for others and a perfect knowledge of one's profession, practices and changes. Previously, talent was easily identifiable. Now we have to find it with tools such as annual reviews, the 360 °, assessment centers, social networks, work groups and all the Web 2.0 tools. However, according to the survey of BCG, 60% of companies have no experience on the subject. This is a new challenge that lies before us in the training and skills management business to help companies with the identification process. They can benefit from benchmarking done with the help of our knowledge on this topic.
Talent management as part of skills management has become a key element for business performance. It is a source of individual recognition, which is a key factor for internal mobility and generates change for innovation. Identifying talent is finding the people that will transform business knowledge by sharing it around them and transforming it into tools, goods or services that can create future wealth for the company.