Why it’s time to disrupt talent management
Mark Loftus for HRReview
“The shift from Talent to talents, from the few to the many, and from talent planning to talent leadership depends on creating and embedding and building a culture of leadership. And this must start with an organisation’s talent professionals.”
To read the piece in full on the HRReview website click here.
Picture this: Your studies are behind you, you’re now years into your career and decide to apply for a new role. When interview day finally comes around you feel like a student all over again as you’re prompted to complete a series of psychometric tests to decide your suitability for the role. This is a scenario many jobseekers – who perhaps now work for you – have found themselves in at one stage or another.
Of course, not all employers elect for psychometric testing or assessments as part of their recruitment process or even as part of general development initiatives – you may well be one of them who doesn’t. But the general idea behind these tests is that the employer and the employee, can learn a range of things about how they work that wouldn’t necessarily be revealed in a good old fashioned face-to-face interview. Needless to say, that’s a topic of much debate.
Whether your experiences of psychometrics or assessments are as part of the hiring process or even part of some one-off developmental training, in an effort to build self- awareness, there is often a feeling of confusion as to what you’re supposed to do with this information after you’ve finished. The results are filed away in a drawer or computer folder never to see the light of day again. So, what’s the purpose? After all, in terms of recruitment specifically, it’s been proven strong psychometric results won’t always translate positively to outstanding performance once someone has been employed.
How you see yourself or how others see you can lead to some hugely valuable insights and personal breakthroughs, in terms of your own performance as well with your interpersonal relationships. Making these breakthroughs stick has often been difficult in the past. They tend not to be sustained and built in to new behaviours and patterns of thinking. This is the way executives work with leadership coaches, ensuring that these realisations and valuable pieces of awareness are directly linked to structured and long-term development.
The need and demand for this sort of informed, continuous development was evidenced with a recent CV-Library study of 2,000 UK professionals. When asked what their career priorities over the next year are, the top answer at 44.6% was to learn more skills while 43.5% wanted to receive more pay.
It’s clear there’s an opportunity here. What if your organisation provided ongoing opportunities to develop new skills, but in a way that was linked directly to insights they can leverage from these assessments?
This is a movement we’re promoting with CharacterScope – the chance for your leaders and people to understand and develop themselves on an ongoing basis. We want to make this process the norm.
As a psychologist and executive coach, our founder Mark has seen first-hand the usage of psychometric tests throughout his career and knew there was a better way. The value your people can take from doing these assessments, need no longer sit locked away in a drawer.
A leadership culture that sets direction
Leadership culture is formed from the top down. Culture is effectively a self-supporting web of beliefs and behaviours. Over time these become leadership practices and eventually create an environment that attracts people who share their values. It is essential that an organisations culture aligns with their overarching business strategy: if the two are at odds, leaders at the top must recognise that change starts with them.
With a clear shared purpose, culture and values, the entire dynamics of an organisation become much more connected.
A leadership culture that drives development
Leadership development revolves around recognising and unlocking potential: identifying our natural talents, having a vision of ourselves leading, and working to turn that vision into a reality. It is rooted in the mentality that each one of us already has natural strengths of character and that becoming a good leader is driven by service in the area of those strengths.
Organisations that have a culture of leadership development use these principles to create a widespread understanding of each individuals’ value and unique contribution. This is not dependent on the time or money invested in tools: it is dependent on a culture that provides the right commitment, focus and environment.
Leadership capability needs time and space to grow and people must feel their growth is valued. They also need to be able to openly discuss and reflect on their progress and the obstacles they face and be able to experiment with new ideas. They must feel that management and their peers understand the importance of devoting time to development and have the freedom to do so.
A leadership culture that drives performance
Building a leadership culture goes beyond investing in and mentoring the next generation of high performers. Organisations that prioritise leadership development lead in attracting, retaining, and nurturing the best talent.
Top level leaders that have the self-awareness and put the time and energy into harmonising their organisational culture and their business goals create a more driven and connected organisation.
A developmental mindset empowers that talent to go beyond their comfort zone, with an awareness of their natural strengths. A culture that embeds these principles inevitably drives a company to high performance. It tends to adopt core values. It inspires employee and client engagement. It aspires to lead in its industry. It organically fosters innovation and collaboration while recognising and unlocking potential.
Imagine an organisation full of people that understand their own value, the strengths of their peers and their potential. Where every team functions at peak performance, understands the organisation’s overarching business goals and has a true sense of purpose and direction. This is the catalyst for business transformation.