Effective leaders bring out the talent in individuals around them. While that sounds obvious, it’s not as easy as it sounds. It takes effective talent scouting to develop the skill of predicting specific ways that people around you can succeed.
2 Keys to Developing the Talent Around You
Clearly identify the talents and passions of your team.
There are a number of assessment tools available to business leaders today. Using a career coach or consultant to conduct and interpret talent assessments is a great place to start if you find yourself wondering “how can I discover my team members’ passions.
One bit of advice: do not rely on your “instinct” to discover natural abilities. You might believe that your team member who completes a technical project or has a strong performance in sales last quarter is gifted in areas of software development or communications. You have at your disposal tools and professionals who can help you clarify the talents of your team members. Simply google “career coach” or “talent development tools” to discover a number of resources available to you. A simple google search can quickly be overwhelming. Reaching out to your HR department is also a great place to find a consultant who knows about the tools on the market.
This is the work I love to do: helping others discover and unleash the talent within them. If you would like to learn more about my services, let’s jump on the phone for 15 minutes to determine if I can help you.
2. Test out team member passions by creating unique assignments.
When I was managing a small non-profit branch, I worked with a lean, mean crew of 5. We did it all: social media, board development, client scheduling, service implementation, donor engagement, etc. I quickly discovered that one of my team members had been severely limited by her job description. Her title was “office manager,” but she had an incredible knack for making anyone who walked through our doors feel heard and welcomed. She also had a long history within the community and was very well liked by all.
Meanwhile, I was pretending to pull off the roles of being the director, therapist, development officer, and community networker. To make a comparison, I had Ferrari social networker on my team, but her job responsibilities kept her in the office all day, every day. I asked her to begin attending a civic club meeting in my place. She came back from the first meeting with 8 business cards, several commitments to attend our fundraising banquet, and most importantly, a huge smile on her face. She loved having an opportunity to use her social networking skills to grow the agency’s footprint. The more opportunities I gave her to plan fundraising events, represent the agency at community events, and build connections outside the office, the more I saw our donations and community influence increase.
If you have a team that you love (or maybe you struggle to love ;), you need to know that your team members are incredibly talented! As their leader, you can either stifle or spark their natural gifts. You can move beyond just “retaining quality people” to “unleashing amazing people” in your business by investing just a little bit of time in discovering their gifts and passions. You CAN be an effective talent scout!