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  • Puneet Sachdev

Matching Talent to Value

A Mckinsey research shows that 30 and 50 roles that make up 70-80% of the value agenda and somewhere like 15 roles drive between 40-50% of the value. The numbers may not be exactly the same across the board, but this research is indicative that there is quite a bit of concentration in value. In reality many organizations may have sizable gaps. I got curious about, did some research and condensed it into this piece.


Value creation is disproportionately skewed to a few critical roles that may not necessarily coincide with roles on top of the org chart or where you think it does. This sounds beguilingly simple - getting the right people into the critical roles that drive value for your organization. The snag is that many companies do not have a very crisp perspective on how value gets created and then identifying the roles that are critical for generating the maximum value for the company. 


And even if they know the roles, they may not have taken a really dispassionate look whether the people in the roles today have the skills and support they need to get the job done. Getting the best people into the most important roles does not happen by chance; it requires a disciplined look at where the organization really creates value and how top talent contributes to this and is what Talent to Value Mapping accomplishes. This exercise is particularly insightful for the G3 of the organization - the CEO, CFO, CHRO. 


How do you map talent to value? 


Three Stages:

  1. Define the value agenda

  2. Establish the Critical Roles 

  3. Match roles to talent 


There are 9 key questions to ask yourself, and here are a few: 

a) how do we create value in the organization? 

b) what work do we do / needs to be done to drive the value?

c) what are the main activities that drive that value?

d) which roles in the organization hosts these activities?

e) do we have the right people in those roles?


You can then categorise the roles into value creators, value enablers and value protectors. 

Asking these questions allows you to have a fact based process at the front end to identify critical roles in your organization and the best people to fill them. You could be putting the future value creation of your company at risk by not doing this. 


That will also bring you to the questions of what processes do you have in place to map talent to value, and the critical question of how you attract and retain such talent.

The exercise only begins when you have mapped the talent to value. Thereafter multiple questions around talent management, performance management and deployment of this talent come into play informing important strategic decisions around resources allocation. 


Some actions for HR to consider will be:

  • Understand how value is getting created in their organization 

  • Give voice to the talent to value mapping perspective and get buy-in

  • Complete the talent to value mapping exercise as a precursor to making better successions decisions too

  • Shore up the core gaps of promising candidates for key roles and for minimizing the risk to the business value agenda


This article is based on the talent-value matching McKinsey does. 


The Singularity Lab is an integrated human capital consultancy, helping technology companies achieve exponential results by attracting and retaining top talent and creating high performing cultures based on data, design and technology. Book a free call to learn more about our solutions here.

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