Keep Your Keepers! A Winning Talent Strategy for 2017

Build a Foundation of Integrated Talent Management that Drives Engagement!

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As we embark on a promising new year, organizations are positioning talent strategies to meet their business goals. Regardless of the industry, achieving alignment of talent goals with business objectives is essential for strategic and organizational success. Foundational to effective talent management is an integrated approach that facilitates engagement. To effectively identify your organization’s top talent management priorities, it is crucial to understand your business strategy. Only then can talent management processes be aligned effectively to that strategy.

Organizations of all sizes are realizing the value of technology to support the integration of talent processes and achieve efficiencies and effectiveness. Wherever you are in this integration strategy, change management forms the foundation to success. That takes a significant commitment of time and leadership buy-in from the top of the organization to front line leaders and across functions.

Bersin’s Integrated talent management (TM) model demonstrates that central to successful integration of various talent processes is the goal to drive engagement and ultimately increase retention.

In fact, this is one of the primary reasons integrated TM is so vital. Based on extensive research, by increasing engagement and retention, organizations achieve significant bottom line results:

Integrated Talent Management is vital because it impacts engagement & retention. Based on extensive research, by increasing engagement and retention, organizations achieve significant bottom line results!

  • 26% higher revenue per employee
  • 28% less likely to have downsized in the 2008 recession
  • 40% lower turnover among high performers
  • 17% lower overall voluntary turnover
  • 87% greater ability to “hire the best people”
  • 156% greater ability to “develop the best leaders”
  • 92% greater ability to “respond to changing economic conditions”
  • 144% greater ability to “plan for future workforce needs”

A 3-Step Model of Engagement

Understanding engagement is therefore crucial to facilitate these bottom line results. Simply put, engagement results in discretionary effort toward attaining organizational goals. Harrison Assessments’ research presents a 3-step model to engagement:

    1. Achieve the right job fit. Harrison’s research demonstrates that people who enjoy at least 75% of their work, are 4 times more likely to succeed!
    2. Identify employees’ expectations. Meet expectations through a shared process involving employees and the organization’s leadership. Harrison’s model measures 8 key dimensions including important employee expectations that impact the organization, teams and work/life balance.

  1. Measure employees’ motivations and attitudes. Achievement of expectations is not solely dependent on external factors like benefits, resources and enablers. Harrison Assessments’ talent analytics system emphasizes the importance of internal motivators and attitudinal factors; by measuring these intrinsic factors, Harrison enables organizations to measure both expectations and motivations specifically for the employee and groups.

In the following example the employee’s development expectations are Wants Development and Wants Advancement. When gaps are identified, supervisors can effectively address them with the employee – here the employee has a potential performance gap in Self Improvement.

Harrison Assessments’ 3-Step Engagement Model

Example: Identify Expectations & Motivational Gaps with the
Engagement & Retention Analysis

With Harrison Assessments’ Engagement & Retention Analysis for groups, Learning & OD professionals are able to measure gaps for key populations to address consistent patterns of needs impacting success within the organization, such as millennials, high potentials or geographic and functional groups. For example, if a group of millennials rate the expectation Wants Development high, while a significant percentage have low to moderate scores in the motivator Enthusiastic, this reflects a Motivational Gap that must be addressed to ensure engagement and retention. The trait Enthusiastic relates to personal goals; moderate to low scores suggest employees may need to clarify their goals and discuss with their supervisors how they align with organizational goals. In addition, there may be a need for clarity of career paths and opportunities for development. Organizations must define developmental tasks, skills, competencies and knowledge, as well as available resources, mentors and trainers to facilitate development.

10 Top Talent Strategies that Leverage “Engagement Intelligence”

Extensive research has demonstrated that when organizations invest in the following ten talent management strategies they leverage “Engagement Intelligence” to achieve their business goals and WIN! I call these talent strategies EQ10:

    1. Align mutual needs of employees and your organization. I have yet to find leaders who do not agree that talent relationships create performance success.
    2. Place the right employees in the right roles. That means not only measuring technical fit, but also the behavioral fit of new hires and internal candidates for promotion. In most cases, the suitability or behavioral side of fit is 50% of the equation! When you increase the ability to measure behavioral fit through effective assessment, you increase the predictability of success. Harrison Assessments offers a highly accurate system to measure both sides of the equation.

    1. Build on strengths. Harrison Assessments’ Enjoyment Performance Theory demonstrates that when employees are passionate, they become engaged and skilled! Based on the research, “People who enjoy at least 75% of their work are four times more likely to succeed.”

    1. Set an expectation for engagement throughout the organization. When management understands their role in employee mentoring and coaching, and employees accept responsibility for their own motivational gaps, the sky is the limit on engagement!
    2. Set the expectation for excellence. While often overlooked this strategy raises the bar for everyone. It is a fact that if an expectation is not communicated, it is not likely to be achieved!
    3. Integrate career development with succession planning. This strategy is an essential part of comprehensive integrated talent management processes. When organizations connect career development with succession planning, they are more likely to engage and retain talent and ultimately succeed in their business objectives. Yet, studies have shown that organizations of all sizes have acknowledged a lack of integration in these fundamental processes.
    4. Create a flexible and encouraging culture. According to the HfS Power to the People Global Study of Employee Engagement, when leadership seeks to control without providing employees with a sense of autonomy, engagement lags.
    5. Implement ongoing performance management through frequent and informal feedback. There is extensive research supporting this fundamental approach, yet leaders often fail to provide meaningful feedback to employees.

  1. Integrate talent management aligned with business objectives. Strategy 9 reiterates our initial premise that the integration of talent processes drives engagement and reaps huge bottom line results.
  2. Invest in your leaders. Finally, strategy 10 of our Engagement Intelligence approach to talent emphasizes the fact that leaders are the top influencers of engagement and retention. According to a study by Gallup, “Poor leadership creates active disengagement costing the US an estimated $450 – 550 billion annually.” When you consider the bottom line impact of poor leadership, it is a compelling argument to start investing in your future leaders today!

“Keeping your keepers” is vital to organizational success. These 10 Engagement Intelligence talent strategies are proven to impact organizational success; with a foundation of integrated talent management and effective engagement techniques, you can dramatically impact achievement of your strategic business objectives. Implement EQ10 in 2017 and advance your organization’s success!

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Having known and worked with Dawson Consulting Group since its formative years, I can personally attest to their consistency and quality of service for over 25 years. Their amazing resilience in the dynamic talent management and organizational consulting field is attributed to their vision, innovation, and ability to provide custom solutions to their clients. Compassionate, giving, supportive, responsive and easy to work with, Dawson places commitment to the client relationship first. In a word, you can count on excellence with Dawson Consulting Group!

Director, Human Resources
Boys and Girls Country