The Lead: Identifying High Potential Employees, Startups and Subscriptions

The Lead, AchieveForum’s weekly brief of leadership news and insights, provides quick clarity into relevant headlines and straight-forward analysis for applying effective leadership tools and techniques.

Scientific Insight into Identifying High Potential Employees

Science has proven for a long time that investing in high potential employees maximizes organizations’ return on investment because a small proportion of the workforce tends to drive a large proportion of results. Furthermore, high potential employees are “force multipliers” who help raise the performance of their colleagues. More recent scientific studies suggest that organizations should simplify their talent identification processes to focus on three markers of potential: ability, social skills, and drive.

Our View: Not every high potential employee will become an official business leader, but there are ways to encourage their growth and the realization of their potential. Take high potential employees out of their comfort zone and create horizontal moves where they can apply their skills at a similar level but in a new geography, function, or business unit. Create opportunities for unique learning experiences and opportunities for them to work with diverse teams on high-level issues. Further Reading

Download our white paper Transforming High Potential into High Performance for additional insight.

Japanese Superstar Athlete Signs with the Angels

Japanese pitcher and outfielder Shohei Ohtani signed with the Los Angeles Angels. Ohtani shared with his agent, Nez Balelo, that he felt a strong bond with the Angels and sees the organization as the best place to pursue his career goals.

Our View: Leaders are faced with the challenge of nurturing and recruiting the best talent. In addition to using your business’ website to recruit, leverage your industry contacts, association memberships, and trade groups. Create opportunities for frequent contact with interested candidates to maintain momentum. Some tactical approaches include allowing candidates to subscribe to your company’s newsletter, sending periodic updates about your job openings, and sending thank you notes to the candidates for their interest in your company. Further Reading

The Future of Home Maintenance

Anyone who owns a home understands the time and monetary expense of maintaining it. An arm of the U.S. Department of Defense, DARPA, researches new technologies, and last year, it launched a new project to create new types of materials that have the structural characteristics of traditional building materials but the attributes of living systems. “Consider the things in your house that decay and rot — your walls, your siding, are there ways you could reimagine maintaining them by keeping them alive so that they could repair themselves?” said Justin Gallivan the manager of the DARPA program.

Our View: There are many ways leaders can spark innovation at their organizations. Providing direction to employees is a great launch point, and this can be achieved by defining the type of innovation that produces growth and is aligned with the organization’s strategic goals. Formally add innovation to the official agenda at strategic meetings to demonstrate its importance. Finally, set both financial and behavioral performance metrics and targets for the results of innovation. Further Reading

Chicago Startup Aims to Help Busy Parents

GoNanny is a Chicago startup that serves families and child-care workers through a platform where parents can book nannies and emergency rides in less than 30 minutes. The $300 per year fee to use the web-based service includes a 22-point screening process for the child-care providers and a screening process for the families to create better matches with providers.

Our View: Companies that create conveniences and efficiencies can help facilitate good time management. Successful leaders are often superior at time management. They excel at dividing their time between different activities and shift their focus from activities to results, understanding that being busy does not equate being effective. Further Reading

Volvo’s Vehicle Subscription Service

Volvo is pursuing an all-inclusive vehicle subscription service to improve customer loyalty and give its dealers new opportunities to increase profits. It will give Volvo consumers a flat rate option each month for all of their vehicle needs other than gas fill-ups. Volvo’s CEO predicts that one out of every five Volvos delivered by 2023 will be a part of the subscription program.

Our View: Leaders juggle a wide variety of priorities and finding recurring revenue streams is one of them. The subscription economy is shifting the business landscape, and leaders must evaluate the needs of their customers to understand how subscriptions could potentially generate new customers. Further Reading

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