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Identifying the Talent You Can’t See
There are always people doing great things out of view. Team members who work in other parts of the organization or who are junior or do specialized tasks unconnected to you are common.
Too often, these colleagues do impressive work and sustain a record of excellence but fall below your radar.
Yet, one of the jobs of every leader is to know where the talent resides throughout the enterprise. How can a leader know about talent they don’t interface with or see?
Because the best leaders are all about talent, wherever it may be, their antennae are always fixed on learning about who is doing great things they can’t see. It helps that peers and colleagues clearly want to know who is most talented in every quarter of an organization. This encourages everyone to share this kind of knowledge freely.
But the best way to learn about talent is to end most conversations with peers and colleagues across the enterprise with simple questions like these:
Who is doing great work?
Who is making a big impression on those around them?
What talent should be on my radar?
Reaching out and recognizing those who are seen as talent by others is the next step. When people hear that those more senior to them are hearing “good things,” this has a material effect on their motivation to do even more.
Every organization consists of a small set of franchise players at every level. Leaders who don’t know the talent beyond their immediate team take the chance of losing such talent because they aren’t recognized or developed.
The best leaders know of the most talented team members throughout the enterprise. Moreover, they know that without giving top talent even more opportunity, they are putting a ceiling on what is possible.