Training Magazine Middle East March 2015 - Page 28



COLUMN - Spotlight On Change

Talent Management is a term that is used in many contexts, shapes and forms. It implies a resource, called talent, is ‘managed’. With management being a maintenance function, then surely ‘talent management’ must be an oxymoron. Why would we try to ‘manage’ or maintain something that is meant for development and unlimited and unleashed application?

Let’s explore:

· What is talent?

· What is the intention of ‘managing talent’?

· What opportunity for change is there for working with talent?


People are said to have talent when an innate skill, quality or aptitude is identified within a person, one which brings a distinctive, positive difference or benefit.

Intention of ‘managing talent’

True talent adds uniqueness to situations and by nature emerges spontaneously and effortlessly.

Organizations become excited about talent and believe it to be especially relevant when aligning with an organization’s competencies. With competencies contributing to or defining an organization’s cultural priorities, personality or desired state, the talent therefore has potential to reinforce, strengthen and ‘speak louder’ about the organization. Take the competency of creativity.

When a talented and creative employee offers additional unique ways of drawing attention to an organization’s creative substance, a customer will have more evidence of the organization’s ‘claim to fame’. The talent may be able to take that current creativity into new streams, designs, approaches and formats beyond its current state, adding even more ‘wow’ factor. So what is the intention of managing talent in that example? Should it be only for the organization and customer base benefit? When three-way benefit is achieved, positive outcomes start to emerge.

Let’s explore talent in the context of entertainment. When a unique way to entertain exists, the management of that talent is expected to bring greater opportunity and development for the talent to shine and perform. This may involve extra travel for the entertainer to new and exotic destinations, in which the talent’s growth will involve preparations for shows in new cultural backdrops.

It could be that the talent manager will open up a differing target audience, with new expectations for the talent to fulfill. One further example may include partnering with other talented and unique skillsets, and finding ways to create magic through the partnership’s alchemy.


talent management