What are the future talent challenges?


The subject of future talent is shaping up to become a central strategic concern of business and human resource agendas. Why is this? Changeboard’s dedicated Future Talent blog aims to explore the multi-faceted nature of this challenge.

Business leaders are aware that future talent has never been more central to success. However, the landscape for this is increasingly complex. It is helpful to define what we mean by ‘future talent challenges’.

Workplaces and their cultures are being redefined by the post-crash search for trust. Changeboard aims to highlight real examples of values-based organisational models at work and will investigate:

  • How leaders create ethical models that employees, shareholders and other stakeholders can believe in
  • How they sustain these models in an authentic way
  • The role of HR in leading and defining this challenge.

Future talent competencies and capabilities also have to be reassessed against the seismic effects of technological innovation and globalisation. What are the successful characteristics that businesses will require over the next decade? What do these changes mean for the environments that employers are creating?

Meanwhile, the mismatch between the worlds of education and work has forced ‘future capability’ concerns to the top of employers’ strategic agendas. How can we align the industry and energy of young people with the jobs of the future? And what roles do the education system and government have to play?

The philosopher, Alain de Botton, recently shared this thought with Changeboard:

‘Future Talent is important for the most obvious but deep of reasons: because the collective flourishing and success of the nation depends on properly mining the talents and interests of the next generation’.

A truism indeed. And it’s important to note that the next generation concerns are not just with young people. The fastest growing demographic within our workplaces is the over 50’s. ‘Recareering’, or redeploying this army of aging workers so that their skills, experiences, loyalty and resilience are all productively employed, has the potential to harvest enormous competitive gains.

The leadership challenges for everyone are clearly immense. HR has a substantive and tangible opportunity to play a leading role across all of these human resource battle fields. Does it have the wit and imagination to impress? Knowledge sharing of leading insights and best practices will be crucial. It is in this that Changeboard aims to play a dynamic role in sponsoring debate and learning among our global community.

I’d like to end this inaugural future talent blog with the prescient words of Marc De Leyritz, a Partner at Egon Zehnder, and a speaker at Changeboard’s Future Talent Conference at the Royal Opera House on July 9th 2014:

‘Since the 2008 crisis, the world lives in an environment of combined turbulence and complexity. Executive talent has to adapt to these new challenging circumstances both in mind set and skill set.

Transformational leadership demands an ability to juggle with several intertwined challenges: mastering complexity; orchestrating creativity; generating emotional commitment to change; building next level leadership; and anchoring the course of action in the global social context.

Meeting these challenges is an arduous task. Nevertheless, focusing on the individual leader as a great hero is no longer an option. The leader’s character remains important, but increasingly the team and the organisational dimensions have to be dealt with in any sizable transformation.’

The readiness is all.

Written by Jim Carrick-Birtwell, CEO, Changeboard & plotr

Jim Carrick-Birtwell, CEO, Changeboard & plotr

Jim is the the CEO of Changeboard, the global HR community. He is also the founder of plotr, a careers advice platform for 11 to 24 year-olds.

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  1. Pingback: What are the future talent challenges? Visit our new blog to find out « Changeboard Blog Changeboard Blog

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