How to Get Greater Value from Your Talent Review Meetings

Time for Review

What can be more critical to organizational health than developing deep, enduring bench strength?

“Employees are our greatest asset” has unfortunately become an enduring cliché, but few businesses would ever succeed without the intelligence, innovation and contributions of its employees.It is crucial to recognize the impact people have on business success, understand the organization’s top performers and identify succession candidates and those individuals with potential to move into larger roles.

Increasingly, organizations are turning to enterprise-wide or business-unit talent review meetings – strategic sessions that mesh business performance with people performance at a high-level view – as a forum for tackling these big issues. The meetings bring senior-level stakeholders together, but often processes for evaluating talent isn’t systematic or system-wide. And, many organizations lack accurate data to support talent decisions.

Without a common lexicon for all parties, or a consistent way to rate and review talent specific to varying talent types, it’s difficult to achieve a fair evaluation of an employee’s performance. Making more pertinent data available can address this issue and improve cross-departmental, global talent initiatives.

Simply ranking employees based on performance or potential isn’t enough to help the organization grow stronger. To do that, development needs must be aligned with business priorities from corporate to the respective division and department as well as employee career goals in order to increase an employee’s ability to contribute effectively to business success. The talent review process is an ideal time to initiate development discussions and implement development plans. And although it is time difficult to consistently make, it’s critical time well spent, especially when it comes to identifying talent moves from the inside.

This time well spent ultimately leads to a disciplined approach that links performance management and development planning with succession planning can help organizations increase the value of their talent review meetings and improve planning for near- and long-term needs. A data-rich talent review process improves aligning individuals with business strategy and helps organizations understand the connection between people management and business performance. With visibility into talent, organizations can identify critical roles for competitive advantage and business innovation; find talent to fill those roles and ensure developmental activities for success.

To facilitate talent discussions, many organizations use a nine-box performance and potential matrix to evaluate talent, understand leadership readiness and which employees have potential for larger roles. Having data to populate those boxes ensures organizations focus on the right talent and clearly understand the development needs to power performance and align with business objectives.

While succession planning should be a natural outgrowth of performance management, many organizations are unprepared when key talent leaves and they spiral into reactive mode, often missing opportunities internally. Formal talent reviews supported by accurate data ensures the organization can harness the bench strength behind critical roles and build an internal pipeline of talent to quickly fill open roles with high-performing, high-potential individuals.

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