Who to develop?
The psychological contract of a lifetime of work with one employer is long gone. In our globalized workplace it was replaced with the concept of developing oneself in the workplace.
According to Daphne Woolf, many senior leaders are not as good at developing talent in others as they think they are or as they should be. Her video illustrates the concepts of “Talent Champion” who understand that they are responsible for developing others more than developing themselves and if they don’t have this skill set it can be developed.
Many successful senior leaders obtained their position by being operational experts in their industry, not necessarily talent experts. But when they reach that senior level they must be both an operational expert and a talent champion.
Daphne Wolf believes a Talent Champion can be developed by doing the following:
- Assessing the senior executive strengths in developing others.
- Embed the concept in the senior executive that developing others is a fundamental responsibility of their role.
- Give them the skills and strategies on how to mentor others.
Developing Talent Champions within an organization needs to become a proactive activity not just a passive activity. This can only happen if the senior executive is naturally affiliated to develop others. HR departments need to take a leadership role in ensuring that the coaching and mentoring of others is a core competency of all senior executives.
- Research to see if you can find a simple but effective mentoring-others self-assessment tool.
- Once you have found a tool use it to measure yourself on your ability to mentor others. Where are your strengths and where are your areas of improvement?
- Review some senior executive’s job description. Determine if they have ‘developing others’ as part of their job description. If so, identify some common terminology.