Academic journal article Journal of the International Academy for Case Studies

Talent Management at the ADV Corporation

Academic journal article Journal of the International Academy for Case Studies

Talent Management at the ADV Corporation

Article excerpt

TALENT MANAGEMENT AT THE ADV CORPORATION

You have been asked to become a member of the Talent Management Task Force (TMTF). Talent management is not your area of expertise, you have little 'extra' time for this, and the stakes seem to be high. TMTF is to make recommendations to the CEO and Board on how ADV should invest an incremental $13 million in talent selection and development for the next fiscal year. No commitment has been made beyond the next year, but insiders think that comparable funds will be made available for several years.

You have decided to learn a bit more before you agree to join TMTF. What follows is what you have been able to learn regarding the reasons for TMTF by asking around (including your boss), a meeting with Pat (Head of Global HR), and a lengthy discussion with your mentor, who reports directly to the CEO and attends Board meetings.

From Your Mentor: CEO and Board Level Interest

The need to invest significant additional resources over the next several years is based on what is viewed by some Board members as an impending leadership crisis. There are several factors that suggest that ADV may be heading for that crisis. The minutes from the last Board meeting provided the following summary of Board member conversations which were being led by ADV's Head of Global HR.

*** Retirements over the next five to ten years, led by the Baby Boomers, is of immediate concern. "By the year 2015, a majority of today's senior leaders will be eligible to retire or will have retired. At the same time, corporate growth plans suggest the need to hire leaders into as many new positions as we currently have. Since the generation that follows the Boomers has 20%-25% fewer people, perpetuating past ways of developing leadership talent will not result in a sufficient supply, nor are the past ways of developing leaders likely to the 'right' ways in the future."

*** Decline of Loyalty and Organizational Commitment. "The present generation of new leaders and professionals is expected to change jobs from 7 to 10 times in their career. While job changes can be developmental and within the firm, they sometimes result in a loss of talent for the organization. Turnover in mid-to-senior level leadership positions has been high in some regions."

*** Loss of Knowledge and Social Capital. "More retirements and turnover translate into a loss of the company specific knowledge along with each departing executives' social capital and contact network. Much of ADV's business rests on loyal relationships with customers, clients, suppliers, and buyers. Many high potential women are leaving ADV just before advancement into senior positions due to quality of life and child rearing issues--causing a large drain on our social capital with some stakeholders."

*** Increasing Technical and Global Complexity. The advances in technology and globalization have made it impossible to conceive of leadership talent in non-technical and non-global terms, requiring more time and developmental assignments to develop leadership talent that is technically and globally savvy.

These Board observations and trends make it imperative for TMTF to be able to make recommendations that will, when effectively executed, lead to the successful identification and nurturing of the talent in ADV ranks, and to the successful attraction of new talent to fill key leadership roles over the next 3-7 years. To highlight the importance of talent management, one Board member shared the following statistics at the last Board meeting: (1) Top performing companies source more CEOs internally than other companies (85% to 68%); (2) they source more VP-level talent internally (74% vs. 59%); (3) they are more consistently able to attract the external talent they want (95% vs. 59%); and (4) nearly all reported ongoing gaps in their leadership talent pool (97%).

The CEO went on to state that talent management is a top priority for us. …

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