As unlikely as it may seem, but this worldwide lock down/ slow down necessitating a reassessment of priorities at global, national and organisational levels will eventually impact the way we go about our lives in a more permanent way- in many ways, then one can imagine for now! This short piece is trying to see what will possibly change when it comes to organisations as they seek talent to meet the new challenges that seem to gather over the horizon ahead!
Depending on where you are on the world map now, either you have emerged out of a local lock down, or are in one in or will be entering into one! Likewise businesses have either started to count their damages, are trying to mange the situations day-to-day basis and doing the best they can for each instance or they are coming up with a business continuity plan to brace for the lock down coming their way! In all these factors, if there is any common thread that runs through (irrespective of the nature of business), it is – The Talent that the business has – the Intrinsic talent pool that an organisation has or that it is planning to build as soon as the situation becomes normal! This will be critical and vital not only for reclaiming business positions and accelerate growth but also to endure a stronger and much formidable resilience for organisations in times ahead when something like this hits next! So what can we expect- well read on…
Automation will get cautious- As strange as it may seem, but this will be a fact, organisations will be forced to look again at the human element and strike a balance between automation and availability of skilled and talented people to ensure that the show goes on even during tough times! Vocations like medical research, pharma research, doctors, paramedics and all businesses that are centered around people and have people at the core of their strategy would have by now understood one thing clearly- no matter what your balance sheet says- If you don’t have the right people during a crisis the balance sheet will continue with a same story which can eventually ending up writing off the business completely off the business horizon!Businesses and Organisations that have anything and everything to do with people- will have to switch their age hold talent acquisition strategies and ensure they have the right balance of experienced- amateur- bright stars and eccentric people at the right time and at the right places within the organisation! This may be an additional burden on the balance sheet of the organisation- but this is the only thing that will stand between the existence and wipe out of the firm!
Methodology of Talent Acquisition- This factor will also see a change, globally where we have a blend of hiring strategies which range from in-house talent acquisition teams to outsourced agencies which can use online -preset forms and test banks to filter and assess talents- well you will be and should be surprised as these things will change a big deal and no matter who says what- the good old personal interview will be back to the forefront with the only aim of cross-checking and being sure completely that the hiring is right and this is what is needed-especially with regards to personality attributes! The essence of Human connect will be at the forefront, certainly this will also depend on how technically or even in general the interviewer is skilled to be able to make the best use of this opportunity- but well that’s a different story in itself! This person- to person connect will be to check more on the soft skills and other personality attributes more then the technical ones’ because technical things can always be trained and made good but if you have someone who wilts under pressure- well the the kind of investment needed to make that change- is simply beyond the investment capacity of an average organisation in times like these! Moreover as said earlier,the whole space around talent scouring will be wrapped around hiring personalities and attributes who can display specific behaviors whenever crisis hits next for the organisation so that the business runs as smoothly as possible with minimal or no disruption! Need a proof- well even in these times – just see around and think about two to three professions which are holding the fort for humanity- Law enforcement, healthcare workers and aviation warriors- now what is common to all of them being selected into the profession that they have chosen- yes you got your answer- tough selection measures and training , training and training for instances like the ones’ that are unfolding right now! Trust me, if you run a big business and are always talking about the next 100 million dollars, it is professional attributes shown by these warriors that you want your team members to have! The whole selection process will move ahead to analyse and seek attributes that show steady resilience, patience, calmness and an ability to perform under pressure, certainly technical skills as demanded by a task will be of importance as well- and one more important thing- workplaces will become quieter- essentially you will be seeking people who are soft spoken, speak less and when they do speak- they wrap it up! Days ahead will be difficult for social butterflies in the office environments!
The Turbulent talent pool- Two things discussed above become possible when we have the necessary pool available from the immediate society. This fact brings to the forefront the quality of education and the state of educational facilities in a given society. Societies and nations where the quality of education and infrastructure is ready to rapidly develop and embrace new topics and add that to the skill set of the future professionals will see a better fit into the industry demands and this will provide the much needed edge over other competing markets ad players to emerge as a leader ion a given sector! This will also bring about a much needed change on how campus hiring are done and this will impact on how institutions are selecting aspirants for specialized courses- all in all, it will be certainly a step in the right directions- however, as the onus will squarely shift to quality over quantity- everything in the value chain from education to campus hiring to final placements – the total cost of talent acquisition will see a rise and yes- this will again translate into a new way that organisations would like to operate in the future..which takes u to the next point!
Lean, Mean and Agile- A certain outcome that we all will witness is that businesses will become leaner- they will use a balance (of course will depend on the business as well). Irrespective whether they are process centric or people centric- they will work towards striking a balance between process automation and number of people (the whole idea will be to ensure every business has just enough and just the right people at the right levels and places)- This will over ride factors like age, gender and will solely rely on talent, skills, competence and experience that is needed and what one gets to the position! Organisations will want to move towards an ongoing arrangement with majority of workers – read variable term contracts and will only have critical and fixed assets as part of full time contracts- this will create a pattern wherein people will have to earn their way into a secured access to income- which will be completely driven upon individual competence and skill requirements of the employer! Finally many businesses will build in business resilience through managing and developing robust BCPs (business continuity plans) which will not only be multi-location but also will be across continents and will depend on the nature of business and importance of its operations!
The dilemma of the talent!- Even as we discussed the various aspects about what scenarios may emerge- one important aspect and perhaps the most important one- The Talent! The talent- who is part of the societal fabric and during this pandemic- is up to something- either neutral and calm, anxious and nervous- or angry and frustrated- reactions can occur in many hues and colors! What exactly an individual has dealt with will go a long way to reinforce some belief systems that they have, while other may get broken apart and yet in few cases new belief systems may emerge-now which of them are right and wrong- is a very complicated call- and solely depends on the individual in that place- one person’s nectar can always end up being anothers’ poison! As businesses engage and start to interact with the talent available around- more and more interviews will end up leavening the interviewer drained and choked (unless they are skilled and wise enough) to know how to engage and deal with people as they emerge from a 21 day hibernation! The talent walking into the Interview room will be wearing layers and layers of psychological protective gear and unless the interviewer does not use the skills of interviewing which are able to build a connect with the talent across the table (possibly over a cup of coffee)- there will be instances of good talent being lost and incorrect talent getting hired! This would have been happening in the past too- but with the changed dynamics of businesses world over- these mistakes now- will end up doing far more damage then ever before!
Well, knowing the limitations of a blog, I will leave you here, so that you may be able to reflect upon your own work arena and irrespective whether you hire talent or you are the talent- this is the time where, you must be aligning your future with clarity more then ever before- hopefully the isolation that you have already come out of , or are into or will be getting into one, will help you to do a comprehensive navigation check for your professional and personal life and by the time you are ready to rock again- you should be clear about the music you want to dance to and the discotheque that you want to be at!
Ciao for now, I will leave you here and will be back soon with another interesting piece with a more generic topic! Keep guessing! Like always should you want to suggest a topic, reach out to me and drop me a message!