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How HR & Talent Can Move Businesses Forward - with Josh Bersin

Josh Bersin is the Principal and Founder of Bersin by Deloitte, Deloitte Consulting LLP, a leading provider of research-based information, benchmarking, professional development, and advisory consulting services for strategic HR, talent management, leadership development, recruiting, and training organizations.

More than 60% of the Fortune 100 leverage his insight on an annual basis. Today he’s offering you insight on…

  • People and talent predictions for 2017.
  • How talent, business, and HR align in today’s business environment.
  • The role data and technology will continue to play in the transformation of HR.

The predominant hierarchical organization structure currently used in HR was designed in the 1930s-40s. It is an industrial model designed for businesses that scale based on industrial scale, or industrial efficiency. The goal was just to create more product at less cost. 

Most of us do not still live in this industrial world… so why are our businesses structured this way?

The transition is slow, but businesses are starting to change. Redesigning the organization is the #1 human capital trend for 2017.

This trend reflects the fact that today’s most successful companies encourage something we call scalable learning – learning faster, iterating, innovating, and getting closer to customers. It’s difficult for employees to make quick decisions or take risks when they are faced with a political and inefficient hierarchical process, and that can limit productivity and innovation. 

Companies are now realizing that the best work is done in dynamic teams. We need tools, HR practices, performance management practices, and reward systems that support this new organizational structure, and it has to be much, much more agile.

If HR and Talent leaders want to be part of the solution, we need to align people and talent with the overall business strategy. To do this, we need to be insatiable learners and analysts, and we need to get our hands on business and organizational data.

One powerful technique that will help HR leaders is Organizational Network Analysis, in which you study projects that succeed versus projects that fail to determine why. What did they do differently? How did they work together? Who did they talk to? What parts of the organization did they communicate with?

The head of talent at GM spoke at a research conference about the results of their Organizational Network Analysis. They found that successful teams had far better relationships, more direct connections, and more interdepartmental talent mobility than the other teams. The teams that operated in silos were the ones that built things that didn't always succeed in the rest of GM.

There is no organizational panacea. Every HR professional needs to get their hands on business data and study effective (and ineffective) talent structures to arm themselves with the tools that will help business leaders redesign their organizations for the future.

Three Things To Discuss With Your Leadership Team Today:

  1. Take the issue of culture seriously. Josh says, “I don't think I've talked to a single company in a single industry that hasn't said, when we really got down into the details of what it is their challenges are, it somehow is related to culture.” Every decision you make about your HR and talent practices has to be colored by the culture.
  2. Clean up your HR technology. The data is invaluable. It’s a difficult thing to do because HR technology is complex, and there are a lot of options. Josh suggests hiring a consultant because more and more of the decisions you're going to be asked to make are dependent upon data and the technical experience you're delivering to employees.
  3. People and Talent demands continuous education and experimentation. A lot of the traditional talent practices that you might have copied out of a book aren’t in books anymore – they're being invented. Take some percentage of your day, week, or month to educate yourself, benchmark yourself, talk to other companies, go to trade shows, get HRCI certified, keep listening to podcasts, and stay current.

If you like what you hear, subscribe via iTunes or subscribe via Google Play. While you’re there, leave a review – we love to hearing from you!

And remember… Develop. Always.

Resources:

 

Production & Development for Talent is Transforming by Podcast Masters