The question ‘How do leaders select the best talent?’ is a loaded one. Often this is asked in a transactional way, where one leader asks another to provide insight into their strategy and actions. It is not so much that leaders have a pre-determined criteria for hiring staff; rather they are required by law to recruit people on the basis of competence and potential. There is an important element to the SWOT analysis in this – without it leaders can easily spend too much time zeroing in on the wrong candidates.
So how do leaders select the best? One approach is to find out the personal attributes that are most likely to influence team performance. It makes sense if the desired results are to be achieved then personal attributes must be high on the agenda. In fact, leaders must take care to avoid mediocrity and the hoary old ‘all-or-nothing’ perspective. Such an approach could hamper or even wreck the opportunity to build a team who are most capable of meeting challenges.
A better way is to use the services of analysis tool. These are available online and cost a fraction of what traditional analysis kits costs. Once downloaded, these tools allow you to enter the relevant information – for example, current industry trends – and then generate predictions about the possible impact of those factors on company operations. It is quite possible to identify key personnel who are either intrinsically talented or who have the potential to become so. Likewise, you can identify those who are either more likely to be successful or less likely to be successful.
However, the biggest obstacle faced by managers when dealing with potential candidates is motivating them. Potential leaders may believe that there is little point in joining a management team because the organisation already has a number of experienced leaders. They may also believe that their chances of securing a top job are slim. In such a scenario, how do leaders select the best person for the job? Some good candidates might include those who have successfully held senior positions within the organisation but who have not been promoted because they have not been able to raise the bar higher.
The trick therefore is to identify candidates who have proven to be effective at inspiring others to achieve high levels of success. An analysis tool can help you achieve this. Identify potential leaders within your company or in a similar industry, who have succeeded in leading teams who achieved significant results. Investigate their leadership styles and the strategies they employed to bring the team together. Look at their track record and evaluate how they built team spirit and leadership skills.
The next step is for you to identify individuals who are either out of touch with what is happening in the office, or whose professional experience does not match up to their abilities. Again, the experts will have identified leadership potentials in these individuals. In order to successfully deploy these leaders, management teams must make sure that they are suitable for the job because their skills may not be compatible with the tasks at hand.
In today’s world, it is very rare to find potential leaders who possess unique selling skills or who can inspire others to become successful. You must instead look for leaders who can exhibit the right attributes – qualities that are required to build and nurture successful teams. These leadership traits can be learnt through role playing exercises that feature leadership challenges that vary from usual exercises. Those who demonstrate good decision-making skills, as well as excellent communication skills, are also likely to be well-equipped to deal with other team members and leaders during their assignment.
Leaders are not born leaders. It takes effort and time to acquire good leadership skills. However, if leaders are willing to put in the required time and effort, then there is no reason why they cannot achieve the desired level of success. So, the next time you are asked the question ‘How do you select the best talent?’ – take into account the qualities mentioned above and consider your personal interests and abilities first, before you select your leadership candidate.