Stop Harassing My TalentsWritten by Fida Al-Americani

Talent war for Talents identification and attraction is where most corporate financial and intelligence efforts have been going for the last decade in an attempt to harness the corporate ability to groom its human capital base.

We do everything possible to have that Talent see us, like us and join us. When we finally reach the big day and the beloved creature is on-board, our recruitment process claims high prides for succeeding in bring HIM/HER.

A blended journey of investment, creativity and learning then starts, with a conviction mixture of passion, patience and perseverance that the talented fellow will leave an indelible legacy of achievements, commitment and excellence. It is in that spirit of passionate professionalism so firmly ingrained that it becomes almost intuitive, leaving no room for doubts and proofs, that talented resources are looked up at.

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Geoff Cook
Founder, IAPPD Ltd

So what happens suddenly?

What justifies the proved high attrition rate of talented resources?

Why do divorce happen with the much beloved, cared for and looked after Talent?

As we both stand of the brink of professional despair, corporate and talent start wondering. Is HE/SHE less talented that we taught?

Did HE/SHE initially fool us?

Did HE/SHE transform after joining?

No matter what happened, disappointment is the new governing reality. The answer is hidden but simple: our current performance management system.

A performance management system that fails to live up to its role and potential, not measuring what it ought to measure.

A performance management system that focuses on “weaknesses” tough we label them “rooms for improvement” rather than on strength.

Our performance management system is built on the belief that to help people get better you must measure them against a series of competency bars, point out where they fall short, and then challenge them to jump higher.

While this feels practical, and rigorous – even “tough” – it is also depressingly inefficient. Reality has revealed that in fact we do not grow in our areas of improvement but rather in our real strength that are our true areas for growth. My areas of improvements are actually the areas where I will have the least opportunities to grow.

Aren’t my strength/ Competencies, the reason why I was initially brought on board as a Talent! A performance management system that is not real in time where lofty goals are expressed to align individual actions with an organization’s mission, to help employees learn and grow, to help improve communication and the relationship between employees and managers, and to improve the performance of individuals and the organization as a whole.

Most of the time few of these goals are achieved since goals that were fresh and exciting at the time of goals setting became irrelevant if not obsolete at appraisal time. Necessary competencies, relationship and remote factors have to be constantly recalibrated, to avoid objectives to become obsolete before we even sit and appraise them.

A performance management system that focuses on reviewing past achievements and leakages, rather critical than developmental.

Talents are stuck in running after the daily operational part of objectives achievements rather than capitalizing on their Talents competencies and how to project them in a future-oriented competitive edge. A future oriented performance management approach would work on accelerating my performance tomorrow by adding new competencies to the existing strengths repertoire tomorrow.

So, that’s a blueprint on what made the bright achievements fade, why did applauses become distant memory and why did competencies gather dust? Talents are flying away a system that does not help them getting better today for a brighter tomorrow.

What is needed is a more holistic and humanistic approach that would feed work with enthusiasm and perseverance, souls with humanity and water values with ethics like we would water a plant.