As many of you know, for the last year or so I’ve been working on a new book called Managing Talent Risk. I’ll give you a full description in a post coming soon, but basically in this book I want to introduce a new—even revolutionary—framework and lexicon for managing your talent risk, especially among your most technical and specialized workers.
Here’s What I Mean by Managing Technical Talent Risk
Employees and contractors with unique technical skillsets are among the hardest resources in business to replicate or replace. These people have your organization’s “secret sauce” for running things smoothly, delivering products & services, maintaining quality and staying competitive and innovative. Having inadequate, inconsistent, or poorly placed technical people is the definition of talent risk.
In my upcoming book, I’ll show you a new way to manage talent risk that replaces competency models and gut feelings with clear, relevant, and detailed talent data. I’ll show you a level of control and responsiveness akin to what executives expect in every other area of business but have never enjoyed when it comes to their people.
Imagine being able to easily see and quantify your technical talent risk in dollars and cents, put it in a spreadsheet, and set a timetable for its reduction. Imagine being able to talk with your colleagues using a common framework, vocabulary and toolset that enables you to get aligned up and down your organization. And imagine being able to quickly punch up or dial back key talent variables to respond to changing business strategies, competitive threats or internal needs. It’s not a pipe dream—it’s already being done—and it’s where I plan to take you in my new book.
Other Ways to Manage Talent Risk Besides Knowledge Transfer
Obviously, as knowledge transfer experts, my consulting firm uses knowledge transfer as the preferred way to mitigate our clients’ talent risk. But, in one chapter of the new book, I want to showcase other solutions people are using to manage talent risk. I want to tell your success stories.
Here are some examples so far of what I’m seeing:
- A global biotech firm is gathering amazing data that helps them assess how quickly new employees are coming up to speed by the quality of the questions they are asking.
- A big pharma team has developed an innovative tool to capture research outcomes before they get lost in PowerPoint.
- A major distribution company is using IT Skill Builder’s resource guide to introduce a series of activities, experiences, training and learning assets to IT employees
- A major insurance company is cross training long-time employees so they can handle broader responsibilities and respond to a changing work landscape.
What are you doing to ensure that you have enough of the right technical people in the right place at the right time? Don’t be bashful! I really want to hear what you’re up to. Even if what you’re using is an incomplete solution but has strong points, I want to hear about it.
Reply to this post, email or message me. I’ll be on the lookout for your comments. If your approach has helped reduce your company’s talent risk you could be featured and credited in my new book. Also, please send this to your smart friends. I want to hear from them, too! Thank you in advance.