4 Building Blocks of an Effective Talent Management System

If you reduce all the hype about talent management systems down to the bare essentials, there are only four building blocks that matter:

  1. Knowing the competencies that get results
  2. Managing performance well
  3. Evaluating employee potential accurately
  4. Recruiting the best talent
Sounds simple, but getting it right is as much an art as it is a science.

Competencies play out differently in different organizations. For example, communication skills look different in a US subsidiary of a Japanese corporation than in a US owned business.

Performance management systems also vary tremendously depending on the corporate culture—from the results driven approach of aggressive corporate cultures such as General Electric, to the more laid back approach found in Trader Joe’s.

Employee potential is also evaluated differently in different organizational cultures. Some companies measure employee potential using the FTF (face that fits) method, while others prefers a more dispassionate assessment approach.

Recruiting methodologies also vary widely. At one end of the spectrum behavioral interview and pre-hire testing approaches are used, while at the other end “gut feel” hiring managers rule the day.

Getting the Talent Management cocktail mix just right can be a combination of skill and that magic touch that a great bar tender puts into special dry martinis.


Ben Nash is the editor-in-chief of DailyHRTips.com. He is the founder and chief developer of the blog, providing tech/design support as well as tips and book reviews. Ben has held many interesting jobs in his professional career, including: barista, landscaper, public policy intern, barista (again), professional horse wrangler, ski lift attendant (aka "liftie"), political science teaching assistant, marketing and sales assistant, and an ecommerce/web d...

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