On Growing Talent ...

If you get beyond the opening paragraphs which focus on company and market information, this article* on developing talent & creating innovative organizations has a lot of great ideas. Among my take-a-ways, are:

  • Make Talent a priority: "Mussallem's priority for the position was to nurture talent, so we sat down immediately to take stock of the company's talent, assess the corporate structure, and begin to build a culture that prized innovation, risk taking, and development."

  • Build Talent Management into your culture & nurture it from the top; "His first actions as CEO highlighted the importance of talent management. First, he put talent on the agenda of every board of directors meeting, as well as monthly meetings of Edwards' executive leadership team"

  • Set expectation that developing talent is the primary role of leadership: "Next, he decided that talent management would be a leadership competency that every company manager is evaluated on annually."

  • Involve employees in their own development process: "At the individual level, employees are asked to create personal management objectives, which are mapped to the key operating drivers by managers and directors"

  • Continually evaluate those jobs in your organization which are "critical" to your strategic priorities for the year: "Identification of critical jobs is driven by position, not personality."

  • Build the bench to match your critical positions: “Once the job is identified as critical, then we ensure that there is A talent in the position and create a pool of potential successors. For each critical position that exists at Edwards, I identify two or three successors.”

  • Provide options that challenge staff and allow them to move around and experience the business from different perspectives: “For the youngest, most promising talent—often engineers—the company’s technical development program offers four different professional rotations during a two-year period.”

  • Continuously evaluate the approach: “Every 18 months, Mussallem invites employees to participate in an engagement survey that measures employees’ attitudes regarding workplace conditions, functional management, corporate leadership, learning opportunities, and more.”

From Growing Talent at Edwards Lifesciences (exec summary)*
, T&D Feb 07

*NOTE: Only the Executive summary is available to non-ASTD members through the website. But you can access the full version in either Ebsco Academic Search Elite or MasterFile Premiere. Gotta luv library databases :)

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