How to identify, retain and develop high potential people within your business

Competent leadership is vital for the success of a company. A recent study found that a business with strong leadership is three times more likely to retain talented staff and 33% more likely to outperform competition.

Although many of us agree and we are aware of the above, still only 44% of HR professionals report that they have a process for identifying talent within their organisation. Do companies not think of succession planning? and, if they do, what is the process in place for recognising emerging leaders within organisations?

An issue facing many businesses today is the identification, retention and development of high potential staff. Studies have claimed that up to 25% of talented staff become disengaged and make plans to leave their organisation.

The value of talented/high-potential staff within a business


  • Do 80% of the work
  • Learn new tasks quickly
  • Are rewarding to work with
  • Are effective communicators
  • Make good decisions
  • Take responsibility for mistakes
  • Respect others.

The question is how does a business identify, retain and develop talented/high-potential staff?

The first thing is to know who these people are within your organisation. Many businesses do this through an appraisal systems and managerial recommendation. However, both methods bring in the bias opinion of the line manager. Furthermore, there is the risk that the wrong individuals are promoted into leadership positions resulting in high potentials becoming frustrated and they leave the organisation. 

Other traditional methods of identifying talented high potential staff relies on rewarding behaviour, which can lead to individuals becoming selfish, arrogant and a risk takers. When these individuals are promoted into senior positions, their behaviours can become high risk for the business, with the individual pursuing bad ideas or having a lack of follow through on projects.

Furthermore, research has shown that when people are in junior positions and they are considered to be high potential, only 30% are actually high achievers when promoted into senior positions. 

“The main problem with traditional forms of high-potential identification is that they tend to ignore context and rely on past assessment,” said Ryan Ross, vice president of global alliances at Hogan. “Personality assessment gives you an unbiased, empirical view of candidates’ leadership potential.”

“Personality assessment and feedback provide a clear understanding of your strengths and weaknesses, and how those strengths and weaknesses compare to those of others,” said Rodney Warrenfeltz, Hogan managing partner.

A Hogan assessment is a good way for businesses to identify and understand the strengths and weaknesses of talented high achievers. Through using a Hogan Assessment the organisation is able to provide the appropriate support, training and coaching to promote, develop and retain talented high achieving people within your business.

Life Coach Directory is not responsible for the articles published by members. The views expressed are those of the member who wrote the article.

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