What the Heck is ‘Talent’?

What the heck is ‘Talent’?

Although we frequently use the term, do we really know what “talent” means? The dictionary defines “talent” as “a special natural ability or aptitude”. But what happens in the hiring process when we get down to the final interviews with the most qualified 2 or 3 applicants – how do we identify who has that “special natural ability or aptitude” for the position? We know whether they have the right credentials and experience and we know what questions to ask the applicants in these areas. But what information have we collected in the hiring process to tell us whether they have the desired “talent” to excel in the position?

At Prevue we have historically identified “talent” as job fit. Prevue Assessments and the automated Prevue Assessments system can help to provide answers to the questions posed above in several respects:

  • The Prevue Assessments system can identify the “talent” (in terms of the “natural abilities or aptitude”) required for top performance in any position through the Prevue Benchmark Development process.
  • The Prevue Benchmark Description Report provides an outline of the abilities, interests/motivation and personality profile that effectively describes the “talent” required for any position. This information can improve your hiring process by creating better job descriptions and job ads that focus more attention on describing the job in terms of the talent required for top performance in the position.
  • The Prevue Assessments system provides an online tool to match each applicant’s “talents”to those required for top performance in any position by matching the applicants profile of abilities, interests/motivation and personality traits to those reflected in the Prevue Benchmark developed for the position.
  • Last, but maybe most important, the Prevue Selection Report provides interview questions that identify areas where an applicant may have “talent” or job fit challenges that should be examined in the interview.

My editor advises this article might be a bit too advertorial and I apologize to anyone who might be offended. However the questions raised in this article deserve consideration, even if you find the conclusions overly promotional. After all, how can you acquire and develop a more talented workforce if you haven’t defined what “talent” is required? Throughout 2011 we expect a number of writers will express opinions on talent acquisition and management.

1 Recruitment Technology: Quality Candidates and Quality Process; Aberdeen group, September, 2010

Written by Ken Danderfer