First Steps for Further Developing High Potential Talent

One of the biggest concerns clients’ share about their talent management efforts is that “nothing happens” after the talent review. They do a good job identifying talent and are confident in the list of “high potentials” generated. The shortcoming seems to be in further developing those high potentials and ensuring that they are satisfied and engaged. We’ve put together a series of questions that are useful in determining next steps for each high potential identified during the talent review process.

For each high potential, answer the following (provide specifics, seek feedback and verify as need be):

• Are we doing everything we can to keep this person engaged, satisfied and delighted?
• Are we exposing this high potential to challenging tasks, key projects and/or strategic initiatives?
• Are we giving this high potential visibility to executives, key customers and/or other important stakeholders in the market or industry?
• Are we solving issues that might be pushing this individual out the door?
• Would a coach or mentor (internal or external—other than his/her immediate supervisor) help this individual develop and/or resolve problems that might cause him/her to leave the company?
• Does he/she receive candid feedback about strengths and development needs?
• Are we paying this individual according to the value they create (i.e., is pay differentiated)?
• Are we accelerating this high potential’s development to maximize their ability to contribute and to help retain them?
• What specific next steps should be taken to further develop this individual?

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