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Are you working to retain the wrong talent?

by Craig Ross

By Craig W. Ross 

Leaders often find themselves in a “war for talent.” They are tasked with acquiring talent, developing their staff and retaining the talent they already have. But, when it comes to retaining and developing talent, perhaps it is important to assess where you have been spending most of your time. Take the following hypothetical situation, which may sound all too familiar:

Melissa is a sales manager at Company XYZ. Her team meets their sales goals every quarter and they all have shared that Melissa is an outstanding supervisor that gives them constructive feedback on a regular basis. Pete is also a sales manager for Company XYZ. Pete’s team has not met their sales goal within the last year and they have shared that not only does Pete not give them feedback, but also he’s often not responsive via email.

During her annual review, Melissa was briefly recognized for her great work. Pete, on the other hand, spent double the amount of time with his supervisor during the review discussing ways he could improve his performance. In this hypothetical scenario, the manager who performed well spent less face time with their supervisor and less time reviewing strategies to enhance or improve their skills as a manager. As the saying goes, nice guys—and gals—finish last. And in business top performers sometimes get overlooked.

Many leaders will admit to spending more time with employees who aren’t delivering expected results rather than top performers. The best leaders will spend time cultivating their top talent to support their growth and maximize their potential.

How do you invest more in your top talent? Here are a couple ideas:

  1. Work together to identify desired areas of growth or future goals
  2. Discuss ideas, challenges and successes
  3. Schedule regular check-ins to evaluate progress
  4. Share leadership tips, advice and strategies

How will you focus on activating your top talent even more in the coming month? Please share your success in the comments below.

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