Talent Development: A Research-Based Perspective on Performance

Written by Larry Fehd, CEO & Founder / HPS

While savvy business leaders agree that top talent correlates to improved productivity and bottom-line business results, many of
these same leaders disagree on what constitutes an effective talent development strategy.

According to recent research conducted by McKinsey & Company there is a strong correlation between top talent, productivity,
and bottom-line business results. However, the absolute essential components of an effective talent development strategy—in contrast to more traditional approaches—may surprise you.

According to McKinsey’s research, the top three essential components include challenging job assignments; coaching and developmental feedback; and mentoring. Training—albeit well-intentioned in most organizations—was actually near the bottom of the list. Yet training remains a significant component of “traditional” human performance strategies.

Savvy leaders realize the value of attracting, developing, and retaining key talent. McKinsey’s research confirmed that companies
using current talent development best practices outperformed the competition by significant, wide-eyed margins.

The bottom line on talent development is simply that exemplary leaders and great companies embrace a talent mindset. These leaders and their companies ensure that talent development is a top priority starting with the CEO level and including all other senior and middle-level management. It is not delegated to human resources or a single individual within the organization. If you are spending less time on talent development than you are on other key business imperatives, your people and organization are likely performing significantly below potential.

The gap ( GAP ) between current performance and potential at the individual, team, and organizational level often separates mediocre versus exceptional performance and bottom-line business results.

What are you doing to “bridge” the gap between current performance and potential? What strategy have you developed to improve talent and leverage these gains at the individual, team, and organizational level? Are you absolutely certain your talent development initiatives are producing the very best possible results?

Larry Fehd


Larry Fehd is CEO and founded Human Performance Strategies (HPS) in 2000 following a successful career with Johnson & Johnson where he led executive leadership, team and organizational development. He is masterful at helping clients to break through inertia and the status quo.  He conceived the new and proprietary concept of Invitational Leadership™. He envisions the future of leadership as a passage beyond inertia and status quo and works with clients to develop invitational leaders at all levels of the organization.  He consults to a diverse group of U.S. and international clientele, and speaks and writes about, building high-performance leaders, cultures, teams and organizations.

(512) 415-0748

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