By Sonja Gustafson May 16, 2017

PRESS RELEASE: New Book Showcases First-Of-Its-Kind Methodology & Data On Managing Talent Risk In A High Stakes Technical Workforce

Posted by Sonja Gustafson on May 16, 2017 7:05:49 PM

Managing Talent Risk(MAY 15, 2017 – Seattle, WA) Today’s executives manage risk in most business areas—legal risk, insurance risk, supply chain risk, operational risk and more—but ''people risks'' are often held to a lower standard. Most leaders don’t realize they can apply the same data-driven rigor and clarity common in other business areas to managing their people/talent risk. Insufficient skills and depth on critical teams threaten every organization's productivity, innovation, and competitive edge. And managing technical talent risk is even more complicated and murky. Even the best business strategies can’t succeed without the right people—the scientists, engineers, technicians, designers, analysts, and other experts—to execute them.

A new book by talent risk and knowledge transfer expert Steve Trautman tells executives and managers looking for practical solutions backed by data: you don’t have to settle for half-measures anymore. In Do You Have Who It Takes?, Trautman offers new ideas for every level of an organization (including the corporate board) so that businesses can manage their talent risk with clear, measurable, and relevant data about their teams.

Trautman says, Talent risk sits at the intersection of strategy, people, and business risk. But no one is really owning the intersection of the three. Instead of yielding data and insight for decision makers, this intersection is typically a black hole.” 

This isn't another book about filling headcount. Managers and executives of professionally-skilled teams need to know what it costs in time and money to develop, replace, and align experts who have the unique technical knowledge that is their company’s “secret sauce”—and they also need to know what can go wrong in the meantime. This book goes beyond mere theory to provide a proven methodology for managing talent risk, practical tools, models for critical conversations, case studies, new 3rd-party research, and know-how derived from two decades of boots-on-the-ground experience solving talent problems in Fortune 500s (starting at Microsoft in the early 1990s).

Detailed case studies show the talent risk solution in application. We meet:

  • A Fortune 500 manufacturer struggling to install an ERP system throughout its various plants
  • One of the world’s largest food wholesalers attempting to transform its IT systems and culture
  • Another Fortune 500 managing its talent through an industry downturn and multiple layoffs
  • A leading software developer attempting to ensure consistency across outsourced global tech teams.

Says Trautman, “My challenge to leaders with this book is simple: Don’t settle. Not only is managing talent risks with data possible, it can also be done with a level of control such that you can punch up or dial back key variables relatively quickly to respond to different business needs.”


Steve Trautman, known for his pioneering work in the field of knowledge transfer, has been providing executives at blue chip companies with practical solutions for managing talent risk in highly technical and professionally-skilled teams for more than twenty years. His eponymous Seattle-based consulting firm works across generations, job functions and industries. Trautman has published three books.

ISBN: 978-1- 62634-430- 3 List Price: U.S. $25.95 Hardcover Pub Date: June 6, 2017 (Greenleaf Book Group Press)

eBook: 978-1- 62634-431- 0 Pages: 256 pp. w/ color insert Street Date: July 6, 2017 (Greenleaf Book Group Press)

Topics: Talent Risk Management, managing talent risk, talent risk management process, Leadership and Management

Sonja Gustafson

Sonja Gustafson

Sonja is a marketing veteran of over 25 years dating back to the “go-go” days at Microsoft. She was deeply involved in creating and opening up the new markets of multimedia software, including Microsoft Encarta, Microsoft Bookshelf, and Multimedia Beethoven. She then moved on to help bring the first version of the Microsoft’s corporate intranet, MSWeb, and managed a team of crack researchers who did then what Google does now: find answers. Then there were the “other go-go” days of mommyhood where new dreams were inspired and journeys launched within two fabulous children. In 2011 Sonja joined The Steve Trautman Co. as Marketing Director, and continues her drive in helping businesses manage talent risk so that their workforce is ready to roll.

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