Turning-Down Talent

by Jan Yuill

Bill Taylor goes on to comment in his article (ref: earlier post) about how companies react in an economic downturn – i.e. they encourage highest-paid, most-experienced, most practiced performers to be the first to leave.

* Through the Organizations Alive! lens …

Membership Potential – Talent is a very personal thing. We can talk about managing a knowledge base, but the real know-how is in the hearts and minds of individuals. No amount of software or ‘managing’ could ever mine the resources that one person has through learning, practice, and experience. To let your best people walk out the door is a very expensive decision.

Resource Management – Letting go of top people in a downturn, is clearly driven by the bottom line. Yes, the numbers can tell you how well you are doing (or not), but they are only evidence of circumstances. They only provide feedback to help stay on course, never the actual drivers.

Strategic Vision – This is the driver. If an organization is clear on its mandate, operating principles, and intentions, it will avoid knee-jerk reactions to shifts in numbers. It is only the Strategic Vision that can hold us on course in a storm.

Customer Service – The example of Circuit City, given in Taylor’s article, shows how operating only from the Resource Management quadrant, creates an imbalance that will naturally correct itself. (Change is homoeostatic.) In this case, by compromising the quality of service to customers, they responded by shifting their loyalty. It’s really quite logical. 

For more information about using the Organizations Alive! Model to understand, and take balanced action in organizations, go to www.organizationsalive.com.