In many companies, we’re seeing that more than half of the senior leadership in that company will be eligible for retirement in the next five years. Too many of those people don’t have a leader ready to take hold for them. They are not yet feeling the pinch of that but they are going to be shortly because there is no new generation of leaders ready to take over.
The problem is finding the leadership that has some measure of proven competency and talent but also which leadership has that measure of potential that we’ve been discussing.
It’s a given that with so many baby boomers retiring or getting set to retire, that the three factors we discussed, demographics, globalization and the pipeline lack are going to further stress the need and demand for good talent in the regulatory and manufacturing arenas as well as many others.
For the people who can effectively learn to spot the person with the most potential, then encourage it and nurture it and help their best people get even better, they will have a vast advantage over all of their competition.
Better hiring is the key to the whole thing, but the question is, how to you evaluate a candidate for the job so that you’re taking their potential into account?
Evaluating potential isn’t something that is going to be the same across the board in every company because there is no real empirical data or real program set up to help us to evaluate potential, but a few indications of it may include:
Proper motivation for the job—In nearly every job you will find people who seem to be compelled by something inside them to do the best job that they can. That may be in spite of the fact that they have things working against them. These people demonstrate one of the biggest indicators of real potential. They aren’t driven by something that is more selfish but instead, by the desire to do the job as well as they can for that reason alone. Motivation is, according to the experts, usually stable and usually doesn’t change.
There are several other indicators of a high potential that include:
A desire to learn and an inherent curiosity. This means that the candidate seems to seek out new knowledge and to try to learn new skills as well as to search for real feedback about the job they are doing in order to get better at it.
The person with real potential will also be engaged in their work and will communicate and connect with others on a deeper level.
They will also demonstrate real insight into the job they are doing and will be able to more readily and rapidly gather information and make sense of it and be able to explain it to others.
Each of these things shows that the candidate has potential and will be a good hire for the company and a good fit for the position. That doesn’t mean that you neglect other things such as former positions or previous experience or even intelligence and aptitude. What is means is that there are other things that must be taken into account these days in order to ensure the best fit for your clients.