Talent development – Keeping key executives in changing times

When the going gets tough, the tough gets going. It’s an age-old adage but one that resonates with all walks of life and considerably more so in the face of monumental and ongoing change. Human beings are typically predictable beasts. We like routine and we respond to reward. That’s why babies are fed on an hour cycle and children are patted on the back and applauded when they achieve and follow instructions. But in a world that is constantly changing and getting smaller, routines and rewards, especially financial, are becoming increasingly rare commodities and as such successful managers will be those who identify and implement new ways of retaining key talent. People dislike change and uncertainty, but they love familiarity and involvement. Keeping key executives, engaging them as change agents and developing and investing in your in-house talent are all ways to help the change become less daunting. As a leader your clear, concise and honest communication is key. Deliver it constantly, especially to the key executive group, who as the drivers of your policy change, will be pivotal in delivering the message down to the staff further down the line. Make this group not only involved in the change but be the drivers of it. Money no longer reigns supreme in the motivational stakes like it once did. Yes, it’s a major factor but people respond better to professional development and you need to be a leader who is willing to invest in their development and reward their good work. This is more than simply letting people attend courses, it is also about raising the bar for them. As your best people respond to the new environment, stretch them and then reward them with your most challenging roles. Finally as a leader you need to lead by example and be visible at the time of change and supporting your talent pool through the challenging times.