Going Beyond The Old-School Talent Pool

Going Beyond The Old-School Talent Pool

Written by Ollie Phillips

Ex-England 7's Captain turned director, motivator and leader, helping teams exceed their goals.

The phrase “thinking outside of the box” has become quite popular when talking about innovation and creativity. And I think we can apply that same sentiment when discussing finding the right person for your company. Are you “recruiting outside of your talent pool”?

While some technical skills or a specific qualification might be essential for certain positions, they can also be stopping you from finding the right person for your team.

Looking for someone who is maybe not as qualified but has great initiative, motivation and determination to learn and grow can be the key to an untapped talent pool.

Many people are looking for an opportunity to prove themselves; they may not have all the knowledge yet. Still, they are passionate and motivated to overcome their challenges and fulfil their potential.

Young people who just finished their studies, people with experience in different environments or from different backgrounds, can all be the next great opportunity for your company.

Whilst also potentially increasing the diversity, creativity, and innovation that exists within your company environment.

When they offered me the position at PwC, I didn’t have any knowledge about tax or even the company itself. But they weren’t looking at my technical skills; they were interested in my leadership skills.

This is an excellent example of what I mean. For the most part, technical skills can be learned. While developing soft skills and aligning motivation and values is a lot more complicated.

I can assure you that finding a person whose values align with the company and who is highly motivated to evolve would be your greatest investment over time.

Statistics show that younger people are not making their decisions based on salaries anymore. We all want to spend our time doing something we love and into something we can be proud of.

Investing in people can and will increase loyalty and engagement.

Outstanding leadership centres around people. It’s about helping each person in your team play to their strengths and maximise their full potential.

Every individual in your organisation should be your greatest asset. Investing in people is a long-term play that can influence your results dramatically.

While it’s not always possible to overlook experience, as there are many positions where technical skills are essential, broadening your talent pool by looking towards diversity is always possible.

Prioritising or paying more attention towards developing the softer skills of your people implies a greater focus and energy commitment to their own personal development. And whilst this is not the development of a ‘technical’ skill per se, it is still a great strategy to increase the loyalty and engagement of your people across your organisation.

The aim should be to find the right person for your team and company. This doesn’t necessarily mean choosing the person with the most experience or greatest CV; it means finding the right fit. Culturally, emotionally, and professionally that will really compliment the values of your organisation.

This can often be dictated by that person’s qualifications or experience in a particular market. Still, consideration has to be given to their motivations and aspirations. Their ambitions to grow and learn. Or their diversity of experience and background allows them to offer something different that you might not have seen before.

The critical aim for leaders should be to create a team where everyone is highly invested, motivated and inspired towards the company goals. A homogeneous team or group of individuals is not the way to achieve this.

Encouraging difference is really the only way to continue to evolve and grow as a company.

I learned an important lesson when I became the director at PwC, and I carry this lesson along with me.

Stay hungry; stay humble; surround yourself with people who are better than you and think differently to you; don’t be scared of change or difference of opinion, but embrace the opportunity to learn and grow at every stage of the journey.

At Optimist Performance, for me, it’s more important to know that I work with people invested in the company and who share the same values, rather than people who are only seeking higher salaries and titles. I like to focus on the development and growth of my team and be sure that everything we do is a team effort.

You May Also Like…

Share This