This report focuses on the cultural perspectives on talent and talent management. The cultural perspectives are critically evaluated. One can see how each culture influences the perspective of talent management and how these perspectives vary. The report includes different approaches that are rather helpful in developing and managing talent in global businesses. Among the mentioned approaches, one can find an exclusive approach as well as selective and developmental method. These approaches have different methods in developing and managing talent in businesses since they are focused on different aspects. In addition, the report includes recommendations on developing and managing talent in global businesses. The method of the analysis is a qualitative one since it is based on collecting data necessary for the research. The results of research have showed that even in global perspective, talent management can be viewed differently depending on a country. In addition, the research has showed that different approaches are useful for different aspects of the issue.
The modern business environment faces many challenges today. Technological progress, growth of the competitive force, and constantly changing market require flexible and competitive workforce. In order to satisfy the business environment with the required human resources, the demand for employees has changed within the time. Today, the quality of human resources is the goal number one for any organization. Business requires skilful, flexible, adaptable, energetic, and mobile individuals who have professional skills in performing specific obligation and managing the work of others. According to this demand, there appears a new phenomenon known as talent management (TM). The goal of TM is to select, identify, hire, and manage employees who have potential for the high quality performance. TM is more individually-oriented and is interested in employees who have certain skills and abilities or can be easily trained in order to learn the required skills.
Despite the wide spread of TM, it is not a stable phenomenon and may have different features and specifics according to the culture. The representatives of different cultures use different approaches to implement TM since their vision of this phenomenon is not the same. The multi-national corporations need to use different approaches since the employees who represent various cultures require special methods of TM implementation. The director of such corporation should be able to notice talent among his/her employees. However, the representatives of different cultures have different perception of talent. Some believe that almost everyone has it, while others view it as a rare phenomenon. As a result, their approaches and methods used for TM identification and selection are different depending on culture. Hence, TM is a specific part of management, which predetermines the work with employees who have talent or can be trained in order to become talented workers.
The role of TM lies in identification of each employee’s talent and ability to learn how to use his/her talent for the organization’s purposes (Allen 2014). Hence, the approaches used in TM depend on the organization’s demands and goals. For instance, one of the basic approaches in TM is the inclusive and exclusive methods. Both inclusive and exclusive approaches have the similar goal which lies in satisfying the organization’s demands, but they use different tools to achieve that goal. Inclusive approach predetermines the creation of a healthy working environment; according to this approach, employees’ relationship should be based on such principles as trust, honesty, and openness (Auguste & Gutsatz 2013). The exclusive approach uses motivation as the main tool of influence on employees’ performance. This approach is used when an organization needs the high return of investments in short period of time and thus, it requires the high level of productivity. Inclusive approach predetermines the long-term actions, while exclusive approach helps to achieve the results as fast as possible. From the global perspective, both of these approaches are useful since they are adoptable to the situations with different goals. In some cases, it is necessary to create a pleasant environment, while in others, when time is limited and results need immediately, one should use exclusive approach.
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Another approach to talent management is the choice between selective and development method. One of the most discussed issues in TM is whether the talent should be searched or trained (Berger & Berger 2011). The absolute answer to this question cannot be found because it depends on numerous factors which predetermine the usage of one of these approaches. Nevertheless, the initial reason is the perception of employee’s talent as such. Some people believe that talent is something that belongs to a person and it cannot be changed or trained (Turner & Kalman 2014). In other words, some people have talent, while others do not, and all attempts to develop it in such people will be in vain. However, there are also those who believe that talent is the same quality as professional skills, and people become talented within the time due to their experience, practice, and skill improvements. Hence, talent is something that can be developed if one chooses the proper methods for employees’ growth. Besides, the vision of talent also depends on the initial manager’s perception of employee. If a manager does not believe that a particular employee has a talent or he/she could be trained in order to develop talent, none of these approaches will work.
Besides the philosophical disputes about existence or development of talent, HR practitioners also raise an issue of an approach that can help to identify talent. In order to identify it, mangers usually use either standardized approach or subjective approach. Many of HR practitioners believe that they do not require any specific definition of a talent because they use quite simple principle to identify it: “I will recognize it when I see it” (Burbach & Royle 2010). They do not use any tests to identify whether a person has talent or he/she has potential for talent development. The followers of this idea prefer to interview candidates face-to-face to estimate their abilities and skills. Such subjective approach may work in some cases, but many professionals agree that standardized approach introduce more advantages. First, it is the limit of subjective judgment. HR manager may judge a candidate basing on their attitude to a particular employee, but not facts (Caplan 2011). Second, it is the validity of data; managers may make their judgment using the old data, while the current situation may require new human resources who have specific abilities which were not valued earlier but are in great demand now. Hence, a manger will ignore a potential talent which may be required by his/her organization.
The introduced approaches have different methods of managing and developing talent in global businesses. Some of them help to identify what qualities employee should have in order to be qualified as a talent human resource, while others state that any talent can be developed if one uses the right tools. The process of searching, selecting and training human resources is a complex task. Hence, there are no sole solution that can be effective in all situations (Effron & Ort 2010). According to this fact, when one considers such specific phenomenon as talent management and those aspects which refer to it, he/she should take into account that HR managers search for specific talents which are required by their organizations and thus, they need diverse approaches suitable for every situation individually.
Today, culture in organizations plays a significant role since the current development of business predetermines that multi-cultural organizations become the most successful among all others (Trost 2014). Hence, the cultural diversity and the issue of culture as such takes the top position in organizations According to this fact, the perspective of talent management may vary depending on a culture. Employees, working in one organization may have different cultural background, which may bring positive outcome or become a challenge for an organization. According to Hofstede’s theory, culture plays a considerably important role in TM since the representatives of different cultures may act, feel, think, critique, and evaluate in a different way (Elegbe 2010). For instance, the representatives of Swedish culture used to have close relations with policymakers. They establish the long-term relations which lead to the development of corporatist model. Japanese and Chinese used to view talent as something rare which cannot be identified but may be achieved due to the hard work and rich experience (Thornton & Povah 2011). In this culture, individuals should differentiate somehow because everybody must work like a team in order to bring the best results to the organization. In contrast with oriental culture, the American culture predetermines that talent is something that cannot be achieved within the time because a person may have or may not have a talent at all (Galagan & Oakes 2011). A talent can also be hidden and disclosed, but if it does not appear in the beginning of one’s career, the chances to find out any features of talent in the future decrease.
Hofstede has identified four main cultural dimensions which show how different nations and cultures are interconnected. The first dimension is the individualism-collectivism approach. The main difference between individualistic and collectivistic vision is whether people perceive themselves as “I” or “we.” In Japanese culture, people tend to define themselves as “we,” while American culture indicates that its representatives define themselves as “I” (Hall, Pilbeam & Corbridge 2013). The second dimension is identified as masculinity/femininity. The actions of the representatives of the culture within this dimension are impacted by the role of genders in the society. The third dimension is power distance, which means that hierarchy and inequality is a norm for the representatives of the cultures that chose this dimension (Stahl, Björkman & Morris 2012). The fourth dimension is the uncertainty avoidance; the representatives of the cultures with this feature are more risky and less tolerant. They are ready to take the responsibility for their actions and make decisions on their own.
When organization has the representatives of one culture as it used to be for a durable period of time, the issues raised on cultural basis are a rare phenomenon (Rush 2012). However, today, the multi-cultural organizations become rather a norm than an exception, and such organizations may have the representatives of all four dimensions. In order to cope with the potential challenges caused by the great diversity of culture, talent management is necessary to find the appropriate solution which will satisfy everybody (Srivastava & Bhatnagar 2010). Talent mangers should be able to adapt to the rapid-changing conditions of culture within the organization. Hence, the organization requires people who have specific skills, knowledge, and experience in order to act according to the demands of time. The standard thinking capacity will not bring the positive results since it does not predetermine the unordinary solutions. The role of talent management is to provide the innovative and fresh vision of the complex situation (Scullion & Collings 2011). Hence, an organization requires people who are able to make decisions on their own perspectives, are ready to take some risks and implement the ideas which will satisfy current demands of the organization. In other words, such people should be creative and have specific talent which will help them to solve multi-diverse tasks.
Talent management helps an organization to cope with various challengeable tasks. The main objective of TM is searching, identifying, and selecting candidates with specific skills, knowledge, and experience, or in other words some talent. The word “talent” becomes the central idea of TM. In wider sense, it means that organization needs employees who will be able to perform their obligations well and be ready to easily adapt to new conditions of work. The rapidly changing conditions of work are connected with the multi-diverse culture that exists today in organizations. The representatives with different cultural background occupy different positions in organizations. However, sometimes, it is difficult for them to work effectively as one team and show the expected results.
Work in multi-cultural organization means that one may face various issues in the workplace. For instance, some employees may be quite individualistic, while others cannot work without a leader. There are cultures where gender plays an important role, and it is difficult for such employees to work in a team which consists of males and females or where one gender prevails. According to this fact, talent management operates in two directions. On the one hand, it searches the suitable candidates who will be able to feel comfortable in any conditions and show the high level of professional skills and adoptable capacity. On the other hand, talent management predetermines the effective managing of those who are not defined as talented employees. Despite the promotion of talent management, it is impossible to hire only talented employees, thus, organization has to work with standard human resources using the new approaches and opportunities that help to identify the talent among these employees or develop it within the time.