It’s hardly a secret that my first and foremost passion is spotting and flourishing talents in organizations. With ROI on Talent I’ve turned my mission into my life’s work.
I’m driven to spot and flourish talent wherever I can, because there is still so much to gain. Research by DDI and the Conference Executive Board amongst 35.000 - 50.000 employees worldwide find that only 11-17% of them are highly engaged. Anywhere from 40 to 70% of employees can be classified as neutral. A shocking 10 to 20 percent of employees are actively “disengaged”—just putting in their time or, worse yet, undermining or badmouthing their organisations and bosses. Gallup estimates that unengaged workers in the United Kingdom alone cost their companies $64.8 billion (es billion) (U.S.) dollars a year.
Engagement alone would be enough of an imperative to act, but we’re simultaneously faced with what I believe to be the two major talent-paradoxes of our time. On the one hand we have major unemployment across all developed nations, ranging from 0,5% in Qatar to 50% of youth in Spain and 27,3% across the board in Greece. At the same time companies are struggling with unfulfilled and unfulfillable vacancies: in the Netherlands this number stands at 150.000 for the industrial sector alone. The second, and no less serious paradox is the paradoxical fact that we’re over-demanding talents in our organizations, while simultaneously underutilizing them. The cognitive surplus our talents hold is still a largely untapped resource. In all talent programs I’ve built, talents are required to undertake a strategic project beside their daily work, while keeping their current KPI’s on par. This not only taxes their ability to prioritize, it puts stress on their entire context. They struggle to find time to reflect, glean the bigger picture and think slow, instead of only acting fast. Daily demands put such an incredible load on them that they often only find time for strategic thinking at home. The insanity of this situation is that home and family time is there to renew and replenish: vehemently not to do some of the most important work that needs to be done at work.
So, there you have it, my personal agenda. Offering talents opportunities for sustainable high engagement, maximum utilization and realization of their untapped potential drives me: a flourishing of talent and business results. If you and I can find workable answers to the three challenges above, we can transform what our companies and institutions have to offer our talents. Yes, we can flourish talents and business results!
What do you think? What drives you in realizing the full genius in talents? What’s your talent imperative? I love to read your words and thoughts.