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Retain high achievers, up-and-comers by investing in them

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Are you deploying a system that recognizes and rewards your key contributors and others?

Given the fast pace of most business environments, it’s easy to let managing your talent slip to the wayside as other more pressing needs present themselves.

Talent management, though, is considered by many organizations as an essential practice based on many factors – including business continuity and succession, retaining people who are instrumental in your success and rewarding the right people for the results they achieve.

A good talent management plan and process work for the different generations in the workforce today, such as millennials, Generation X-ers and baby boomers.

There are many approaches to developing a talent management system, but typically it is gaining agreement among company leaders in identifying the key players in your talent pool.

One approach is to rank people into four groupings:

MUST RETAIN – People whose contribution is so great it would be hardship to the business to lose, and they consistently demonstrate leadership potential.

UP AND COMERS – People with emerging talent that with the right development and coaching could move into the must retain category.

SOLID CITIZENS – The bedrock of your talent pool. They produce satisfactory results but either lack the ability or desire for advancement outside their particular work area.

NEED IMPROVEMENT – Includes people who either with development and coaching become solid citizens or should be managed out of the business.

Ensuring that you have the right performance management system in place provides the opportunity for verifiable achievement of results.

Creating objectives and goals for your talent is essential for separating your solid citizens from your superstars. It also provides the means to then reward those who are achieving the greatest results.

Organizations that attempt to reward people equally create an environment for the best talent to leave.

There are other practices that can be deployed for growing and retaining your talent pool. These include:

Rotational assignments to broaden the experience of key people.

Formal and informal mentoring.

Targeted training and developmental opportunities.

Temporary assignments on strategic projects.

Taking the time to develop a talent management strategy reaps enormous dividends for the company and the workforce.

It sends a strong signal that the company deems it important enough to use resources to invest and retain those who can keep the business moving forward.

When people know that they will be rewarded and provided with career and growth opportunities, they are more likely to be satisfied and willing to stay with you.

Marianne Chester is founder and CEO of mEnterprise Solutions LLC, a strategic services consultancy based in Stroudsburg. She can be reached at 570-460-9599 or mchester@menterprisesolutions.com.

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