talent management

Fashion Forward Talent Management

How do luxury brands excel at talent management? If you’re anything like me, the words “luxury” and “brands” likely conjure up images of couture clothing. Maybe you think of models, or stiletto heels? A Harvard Business Review article by Shipilov and Godart (2015) outlines how the world’s most influential luxury groups have more than just an eye for design; they also have an eye for talent.


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Leveraging Human Capital: Are Your Employees Getting Enough Sleep?

Human capital refers to specific employee characteristics that can make a business successful. Traditionally, industrial-organizational psychologists have used the acronym “KSAO”, which stands for knowledge, skills, abilities, and other characteristics, to classify an employee’s work-related capabilities. When these KSAOs are useful for an organization’s overall economic outcomes, they are considered human capital.


Job Redesign: Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff (IO Psychology)

Topic: Talent Management
Publication: Harvard Business Review (JAN/FEB 2013)
Article: Redesigning Knowledge Work
Authors: Martin Dewhurst, Bryan Hancock and Diana Ellsworth
Reviewed By: Susan Rosengarten

TR_PR_7_30_10_09_-_290More and more organizations are finding ways to outsource busy work, enabling employees to focus their time on tasks that require specialized knowledge and expertise.

Skilled laborers like engineers, scientists and salespeople are harder to find these days, and according to research by the McKinsey Global Institute, a talent shortage in these areas is going to get worse in the coming years. Therefore, organizations are redesigning high-value knowledge job roles and contracting external firms to take care of routine operations so employees can focus their attention and efforts on work only they can perform. This not only helps to address talent shortages but according to Dewhurst, Hancock, and Ellsworth it also lowers costs and increases job satisfaction.


A Closer Look at Human Capital as a Competitive Advantage (Human Resource Management)

Topic: Talent Management, Turnover
Publication: Academy of Management Review (JUL 2012)
Article: Rethinking Sustained Competitive Advantage from Human Capital
Authors: Benjamin A. Campbell, Russell Coff, & David Kryscynski
Reviewed By: Susan Rosengarten

All organizations want the secret to retaining top talent; I challenge you to find me one that doesn’t! Turnover and new-hire training is costly and organizations are always looking to curtail their expenses and get the best bang for their buck. Finding job candidates with the right mix of knowledge, skills, and abilities can be tough, but getting the right people to stay once you’ve found them can be even tougher.


Can Mindfulness Make Your High Potentials Higher Promise? (IO Psychology)

Topic: Burnout, Leadership, Talent Management
Publication: The Industrial-Organizational Psychologist (JAN 2012)
Article: Accelerating the Development and Mitigating Derailment of High Potentials Through Mindfulness Training
Authors: R.A. Lee
Reviewed By: Chelsea Rowe

High Potential employees (HiPos) are the highly sought after, cream of the crop, high performing, next generation leaders.  Senior management proactively seeks these stars and then sends them through numerous assessments, coaching, special training, and other rigorous developmental opportunities with the intention of producing a bigger, better, faster, stronger next generation of leadership for their company.  Despite confidence and extra investment in these HiPos’ promise, these shining stars often fail to live up to their fabled promise or worse: burnt out.  So how can companies increase the likelihood of retaining their stars and develop them without burning them out?


Making an A-Team? (Human Resource Management)

Topic: Selection, Talent Management
Publication: Harvard Business Review (JAN 2012)
Article: Gilt Groupe’s CEO on Building a Team of A Players
Author: Kevin Ryan
Reviewed by: Liz Brashier

In a recent article by the CEO of the flash sales company the Gilt Groupe, Ryan (2012) discusses what makes a company truly successful. (Hint: it’s something we focus on the most!) According to Ryan, a business idea is worth next to nothing – without the right people to implement it.


Increase generic human capital to increase unit-specific human capital

Topic: Organizational Performance, Talent Management, Strategic HR
Publication: Academy of Management Journal (APR 2011)
Article: Acquiring and developing human capital in service contexts: The interconnectedness of human capital resources
Authors: Ployhart, R. E., Van Iddekinge, C. H., & MacKenzie, W. I.
Reviewed by: Alexandra Rechlin

It is widely acknowledged that human capital is important, but does it matter whether the capital is generic (transferable to other organizations) or unit-specific (valuable to that particular work unit and not to others)? In this article, Ployhart, Van Iddekinge, and MacKenzie (2011) assessed both generic and unit-specific human capital in a large fast-food organization. They created and tested a model for how the two kinds of human capital relate to each other and to performance and effectiveness outcomes.


Thinking about Building the Box: Practical Intelligence & Entrepreneurs

TopicJob PerformancePotentialTalent Management

Publication: Personnel Psychology (SUMMER 2011)

Article: The Practical Intelligence of Entrepreneurs: Antecedents and a Link With New Venture Growth

Authors: Baum, J. R., Bird, B. J., & Singh, S.

Reviewed By: Thaddeus Rada

Although general intelligence has been found to be a good predictor of potential success in a job, recent research suggests that other, more specific forms of intelligence may also be useful in predicting job success. One aspect of these other intelligence constructs that is particularly encouraging is that they can be developed. As such, if a particular type of intelligence were demonstrated to have an especially positive impact on individuals’ success in a given field, then education and training in this field could emphasize cultivating this form of intelligence in the people studying it.


Want to increase performance? Take a look at Psychological Capital

Topic: Performance, Talent Management, Human Resource Management
Publication: Personnel Psychology (SUMMER 2011)
Article: Psychological capital and employee performance: A latent growth modeling approach
Authors: Peterson, S. J., Luthans, F., Avolio, B. J., Walumbwa, F. O., & Zhang, Z.
Reviewed by: Alexandra Rechlin

You’ve probably heard about human capital being related to performance, but what about psychological capital? Human capital refers to the skills and knowledge that employees possess which are relevant to the organization. Psychological capital, however, is a higher-order construct consisting of efficacy (confidence), hope, optimism, and resilience. The study described in this article explores the variability of psychological capital within individuals and the relationship between psychological capital and performance.


Do you care about human capital? You should!

Topic: Organizational Performance, Talent Management, Strategic HR
Publication: Journal of Applied Psychology (MAY 2011)
Article: Does human capital matter? A meta-analysis of the relationship between human capital and firm performance
Authors: Crook, T. R., Todd, S. Y., Combs, J. G., Woehr, D. J., & Ketchen, D. J.
Reviewed by: Alexandra Rechlin

It is often assumed that human capital is related to organizational performance, but the research literature provides mixed support for that assumption. In this article, the authors conducted a meta-analysis of 66 studies to clarify the seemingly contradictory research on the relationship between human capital and firm performance.


How talent analytics – and I/O psychologists – can help organizations succeed

Topic: Business Strategy, Strategic HR, Talent Management
Publication: Harvard Business Review (OCT 2010)
Article: Competing on talent analytics
Authors: T. H. Davenport, J. Harris, J. Shapiro
Reviewed By: Liz Brashier

How many times have you made a “people” decision based on gut instinct? Whether it’s deciding which department needs attention, selecting a customer population to target, or trying to determine our organization’s overall health, Davenport, Harris, and Shapiro (2010) encourage us to make these critical talent decisions based on analytics rather than “going with a gut instinct.” In an article rife with illustrations of organizations that effectively use analytics to save money, increase profits, and retain the best talent, the authors give us six types of analytics to use when addressing talent issues:


Smarter Employees Perform Better, but Will They Stay?

Topic: Evidence Based Management, Talent Management, Turnover
Publication: Journal of Applied Psychology (AUG 2010)
Article: A conceptual and empirical analysis of the cognitive ability-voluntary turnover relationship
Authors: M.A. Maltarich, A.J. Nyberg, and G. Reilly
Reviewed By: Benjamin Granger

Cognitive ability is one of the best predictors of employee job performance across jobs, but there are other important organizational outcomes besides job performance that cognitive ability may not predict as favorably.  One such possibility is voluntary turnover. Unfortunately, previous attempts at linking cognitive ability to voluntary turnover have shown that the relationship is not as simple as “high cognitive ability employees are more likely to leave voluntarily than low cognitive ability employees”.

Maltarich et al. (2010) argue that this important relationship is better understood when the cognitive demands of employees’ jobs are considered.


Mercer asks 400 organizations about growth and talent management

Topic: Talent Management
Publication: The Financial
Article: Employers reshaping talent management programs as economy shifts toward growth
Reviewed by: Sarah Teague

The success of an organization has proven to be largely contingent on the success of their employees. Indeed, the– see below for more info on this cornerstone article. A recent survey by Mercer sought to investigate the current status and practices of over 400 U.S. organizations.


Perspectives on Potential

Topic: Potential, Talent Management
Publication: Industrial and Organizational Psychology: Perspectives on Science and Practice (DEC 2009)
Article: The Pearls and Perils of Identifying Potential
Authors: R. Silzer and A. Church
Selected Commentary Authors: Robinson, Fetters, Riester, & Bracco; Dalal & Nolan
Reviewed By: Samantha Paustian-Underdahl

Identifying and developing talented employees is a human resource strategy that can help many – if not all – companies achieve business success. However, with the multitude of theories and techniques currently being used by practitioners and academics, how do you know the best way to identify talent in your organization? Silzer and Church (2009) introduce a new integrated model of potential that includes theories from previous literature and trends from current practices regarding high potentials which can be applied to a variety of settings and talent pools.