Tag Archives: Strategy

Strategic and Systems Thinking & Global Talent Management Strategies

  1. Strategic thinking involves SYSTEM THINKING, reframing (e.g., positive thinking), and reflection (e.g., evaluating one’s reasoning). Strategic thinking is best enabled in unforceful leadership communities and has positive effects on information seeking behavior (Pisapia, J., 2006)
  2. A system thinker (as compared to a linear thinker) is able to improve the performance of a whole by not only improving its parts but by enhancing the RELATIONSHIPS AMONG THE KEY PARTS systemwide.
  3. Often, solution approaches are rather reactive and focus on addressing symptoms rather than the underlying problems. CHANGES COMES AT THE LEVEL OF CULTURE, mindset, by regenerating MENTAL MODELS based on (self-) awareness.
  4. Be aware of the heuristics (“rules of thumbs”) in DECISION-MAKING STRATEGIES. For important decision, mental shortcuts may rely too heavily on limited (personally available) and representative (personal image) information.
  5. Although GLOBAL MOBILITY SURVEYS (BGRS, 2016) report the strategic importance of global mobility function for the competitive advantages of large organization, only 10% of the respondents answered that their company’s global mobility strategy is aligned with the broader talent agenda.
  6. Immersion into international assignments/expatriation may foster more deep LEARNING ABOUT THE ‘HOW’ AND ‘WHY’ of how foreign cultures on the otherwise invisible level work. This can be beneficial for individual career capital and talent retention.
  7. Different career trajectories (e.g., dual careers) require a more strategic ALIGNMENT OF LIFETIME STAGES AND CAREER STAGES that are integrated into the organization’s strategic direction.
  8. Cultural tightness (independent of nationality, culture, and legislation for gender equality), in some organizations in some countries, hinders ADVOCATING WOMEN LEADERSHIP (Toh, Leonardelli, 2013)
  9. REVERSE/BACKWARD MENTORING can help to bring together the younger generations’ digital talent and the older colleagues rich experience, while providing both a possibility to engage and develop (Claire, 2011).
  10. More PROFESSIONAL FREEDOM, MEANINGFUL WORK, and WORK-LIFE BALANCE tend to constitute job characteristics increasingly crucial as a high-level tendency across different cultures. The question remains how far these can be achieved in environments of fierce competition and profit requirements.
Course-3-Session-5-Global-Talent-Management-Strategies_v02-compressed

Inspirational Leadership: Allowing the Soul to be Free

1.Inspirational leadership is a less studied, but holistic concept that centers within the presence of a whole mind that is aware of the being and doing of the self and others.

2.As an inspirational leader who gives ideas to others, investing time and effort into self-development is vital. One can only give what’s inside of him/her.

3.The human side of leadership is fundamental for an inspirational interaction between leaders and followers.

4.The most appreciated leadership aspect is the ability to inspire. The capacity to inspire does result in high employee commitment.

5.Inspirational leaders positively influence employee characteristics, such as independent thinking and pro-activeness. These qualities not only foster innovativeness and drive business performance, but also have a positive effect on followers’ happiness at work.

6.The quest for the ‘Why,’ critical thinking, purpose, passion, and caring emotional intelligence all come from within oneself. Self-awareness and autonomy is the foundation for accessing the source of inspiration. Allow your soul to be free.

7.Authenticity is the core of inspirational leadership. Authentic behavior arises when the ‘who you are’ and the ‘what you do’ are aligned. A genuine and ethical leader differentiates between the true needs of his/her inner being as compared to the many and often conflicting demands and conditions of society.

Slides from our 80% is Psychology event, December 12th, 2018 in Tokyo.

Loader Loading...
EAD Logo Taking too long?

Reload Reload document
| Open Open in new tab

Download [3.21 MB]

Personality and Leadership Styles

 

Slides from our event, December 5th, 2018:

Loader Loading...
EAD Logo Taking too long?

Reload Reload document
| Open Open in new tab

Download [3.26 MB]

The leader-follower relationship: Theories and related strategies

1.It is crucial to what role models children are exposed. Babies intuitively follow the eye gaze of their mothers. Little geese adopt the first seen subject after hatching as their caregiver (so-called IMPRINTING). And imprisoned children regard the prison guards as their parents to follow.

2.Followers emulate primarily other followers, not necessarily the leader. A movement is made by courageous followers who show others how to follow too. Therefore it is essential to nurture followers.

3.To form a positive social identity (as everybody seeks to), people use self-categorization. According to SOCIAL IDENTITY THEORY, this risks leading to biased social comparison in which people tend to over-favorize one’s own group’s individuals’ positive characteristics while they stereotype and discriminate out-group members having mainly negative traits.

4.PROTOTYPICAL PERCEPTIONS cause people to think that the followers of the group they identify with can be persuaded by information, while out-group followers are mis-perceived as needing to be coerced by force.

5.Individuals who follow a leader against their own moral beliefs or good judgment may do so because they socially identify with the leader and consciously choose to follow his/her MORAL COMPASS.

6.Leaders in a mutually beneficial leader-follower relationship provide public goods to their followership. In return, followers voluntarily pay their costs to the leader in the form of prestige. When leaders gain more relative power, and their high status becomes less dependent on their willingness to pay the costs of benefitting followers, the SERVICE-FOR-PRESTIGE THEORY predicts that leader-follower relations will become more based on leaders’ ability to dominate and exploit.

7.In the phenomena of RECIPROCITY, we should differentiate whether it is about our genuine desire to return favors unconditionally based on feelings of thankfulness, or whether we get trapped into “marketing tricks” that let us act upon feelings of obligation and guilt.

8.A secure ATTACHMENT STYLE helps people trusting in lasting relationships, self-confidentially seeking out and providing social support that empowers themselves and colleagues alike. Insecurely attached people may cause stronger exclusion and exploitation of others.

9.Effective followers as fostered by TRANSFORMATIONAL LEADERSHIP are those who are not only actively involved, but those who are also critically thinking to influence decision-making and change. Conformist followers who are not challenging the status quo contribute less to innovation and business performance improvement.

10.DIVERSITY AND INCLUSIVENESS are vital also from a business perspective because better-connected networks enable more knowledge sharing that is favorable for innovation and improves business performance, which ultimately results in increased profitability.

11.REVERSE MENTORING allows any employees to assume, (informal) leadership roles. Reverse mentoring not only promotes bi-directional knowledge exchange, but it can help isolated older leaders to enter into more egalitarian relationships as well.

12.Utilizing CONSTRUCTIVE HUMOR may be an effective leadership strategy to win trust and commitment from followers as it bridges authority gaps and encourages the both-sided expression of positive emotions even when addressing difficult matters.

 

Slides:

Loader Loading...
EAD Logo Taking too long?

Reload Reload document
| Open Open in new tab

Download [2.88 MB]

Leaders are not born, they are made

1.Whether in a formal position, at work or in private, our influence on others is more significant than we think. It may be your today’s courageous example that inspires somebody else even years later to do the right thing as well.

2.To be a leader means to be a continuous learner, and learners are readers.

3.While leadership theories as a relatively young science are becoming ‘smarter,’ there is also ancient and timeless leadership wisdom based on ‘kindness.’

4.Against persistent myths: Leaders are not born, they are made.

5.Do not let you blend by the ‘halo effect’ to conclude that people being good or powerful in one area might be consequently amazing in other areas too.

6.Adapt your leadership style according to the situation and development phase of the people needing direction, coaching, support, or delegation.

7.While transactional leaders make today better by rewarding good performance, transformational leaders are focused on making tomorrow better too.

8.For personal charisma, develop your emotional and social intelligence. As a visionary leader, learn how to visualize an attractive and ideal future that inspires others to follow their heart.

9.A majority of employees is disengaged. Increased participation is required to move beyond consumer behavior. Only with emotional and economic co-ownership will people assume more responsibility/accountability.

10.The administration of existing businesses often leaves little room for leadership that involves the creation of new meaning and change. Differentiate a position-based management career requiring short-term profitability goals versus a self-guided leadership desire to make a difference beyond market considerations in the long-term. You always can be a leader!

11.Always re-evaluate your beliefs in symbols and rules, don’t assume, don’t judge, and listen to people for who they truly are. That’s how you can empower yourself and others to become more free, understanding, and creative.

Slides:

Loader Loading...
EAD Logo Taking too long?

Reload Reload document
| Open Open in new tab

Download [2.68 MB]

To be free requires freedom to learn

Thankful for another night being free to learn.

mathias-sager-freedom to learn

 

Slides:

Loader Loading...
EAD Logo Taking too long?

Reload Reload document
| Open Open in new tab

Download [3.02 MB]

The Tripod Mindset (TM)

mathias-sager-tripod-mindset

Summary

There are individual, organizational, and societal human and technological approaches available today. However, there is little integration of these dimensions into a coherent mindset, educational concept, or cooperative platforms. Therefore, I’ve dedicated the last couple of years to the study of leadership, learning & development, psychology consequently from cross-culturally, multi-disciplinary, and inter-generationally cooperative perspectives. And I’ve performed intensive testing of a, as I think, new discovery of a pattern of the human mind, which I’m calling the ‘Tripod Mindset (TM).’ I have found that three logic matrix-derived socio-temporal conditions put together to a “tripod” mindset would eliminate random, imbalanced, and unconnected ways of traditional and contemporary human thinking in favor of more healthy attitudes and drive for positive human evolution.

Tripod Mindset (TM) Highlights

My background in education sciences, leadership, art, technology, and psychology have equipped me with different perspectives on individual, organizational, and socio-cultural functioning. My navigation between the philosophy of time represented by the past, present, and the future, and the intra-, inter-, and extra-personal dimensions of information and communication (technology) have led me to discover a, as far as I’m aware of, novel and lawful socio-temporal matrix in which our temporal thinking about ourselves, our relationships, and humanity consolidates.

The mapping of thousands of (scientific) resources to the matrix of aforementioned socio-temporal dimensions revealed the striking finding of three coordinates that jointly form a set of mental states that governs human psyche and thriving, which I’m going to call the “Tripod Mindset (TM).” The further study of TM as an interdisciplinary concept shall explicitly consider aspects such as the Internet as a tool for democracy and global citizenship. The time seems to be ripe for leading the way to more distributed and participative approaches including a broader range of stakeholders globally. For example, the TM can be translated into design principles, which would be informing the development of next-generation and more cooperative online platforms that integrate the intra-past, inter-present, and extra-future thought patterns necessary for progressing agile approaches and human flourishing in the virtual and physical world.

Also, the TM could be used to get a balanced view on how sustainable (from an individual and collective point of view) any kind of services and products are. Are they based on a mindset that is backward oriented, protective of the status quo, or facilitating innovation?  What does each of these temporal aspects mean for the individual, the team, and the broader communities’ respectively the human context? The consistent integration of such a coherent “tripod”-stabilized mindset view will guarantee not losing sight of all that is important for true next-generation solutions.

Impact

There are many apt formulations, and rich collections of human qualities proposed to be packaged into so-called mindsets that are deemed to be favorable for individual well-being, organizational performance, or societal functioning. However, looking at worldwide suffering, competitive challenges, and societal issues, there is, apparently, still a lot missing regarding a more holistic, systematically consistent, and continuous awareness that leads to positive human behavior. Technology progress, for example, may enable positive change, but it will not be without a change in human mindset that an improved development and use of technology will occur. The Tripod Mindset (TM) has the potential to inform a new type of guiding principles in sociology/psychology, education, communication, and technology with a disruptive impact on how humanity’s collective mindset, and participative and cooperative policies and economies further develop.

‘Developing Leadership Skills’ online course: Drop me a message for free access.

mathias-sager-developing-leadership-skills-voucher.png

Hello All,

As you know from past years, I have been researching, advising, and working with many successful global leaders. I have also read several hundred research papers and books on leadership from a managerial and psychological perspective.

I am very happy to announce that finally, I have converted key learnings into 1.5 hours online course on Udemy. I am glad to give this course for free for an additional 3 days to my social media connected friends. Those who are interested, please drop me a message and I am happy to share 150 USD course for free. Hope you like this little gift!

My course ‘Developing Leadership Skills: Personality, Motivation, and Creativity’

PROMO thumbnail

My course ‘Developing Leadership Skills: Personality, Motivation, and Creativity’

Hello Everyone!

As you know from my blogging activities, I’m doing a lot of research, writing and projects related to leadership and personal development.

For the last few weeks, I’ve been working on my first online course and today it’s officially live on Udemy, the platform for high-quality on-demand online courses!

You can find a description of my course ‘Developing Leadership Skills: Leadership Personality, Motivation, and Creativity’ below as well as in this introductory/promotional video: https://youtu.be/TQQWZCn3R_A 

I am very happy to announce that finally, I have converted key learnings into 1.5 hours online course on Udemy. I am glad to give this course for free for an additional 3 days to my social media connected friends. Those who are interested, please drop me a message and I am happy to share 150 USD course for free. Hope you like this little gift!

If you know of anyone else that’d be interested to learn developing leadership skills, I’d appreciate if you’d share this information with them too.

Thanks so much, and all the best!

Mathias


Course description

The course ‘Developing Leadership Skills’ is a compelling summary of latest research and good practices that may well become your passport to explore new ways of effective leadership styles, increased levels of motivation, and untapped creativity.

Whether you are an HR practitioner, an aspiring or current leader, an executive coach, or a student, this logically structured course will help you in becoming personally and professionally more effective and efficient. You are offered practical tools for insight and understanding of your possible

  • roles in team situations,
  • conflict management style,
  • successful negotiation strategies,
  • stress management,
  • motivation,
  • better decision-making, as well as
  • unlocking of your innovation capacity.

The goal of this course is to make sure you will find answers to the questions that are relevant for personal growth and a thriving career. Compact, straightforward, and with numerous references to further information, the interdisciplinary, innovative, and cross-cultural knowledge and perspectives presented in the twelve short lectures will benefit your well-being and success as a dynamic leader and the common good alike.

PROMO thumbnail

Hope, Living with Uncertainties, and Tolerance for Ambiguity

Summary. In the light of uncertain future threatening outcomes, present ambiguous information often is interpreted more negatively than it would be the case in a safe context. Black-and-white thinking is hindering positive deciphering of ambiguous information. People educated in open-mindedness and who have learned to tolerate ambiguity can better persevere in their tolerance even in situations of danger. Individuals’ dependencies on hierarchical power can cause closed mental systems that are increasingly unable to tolerate differences, ambiguities, and uncertainties. The promotion of hope might be a useful approach to reduce uncertainty intolerance that leaves more room for thoughtful and empathic decisions. It will be crucial how we instill hope and support our children to live constructively with uncertainties while retaining a high tolerance for ambiguity and open-mindedness as required to find the solutions sought for the benefit of all. What are your learnings from uncertain/ambiguous situations and how did you learn to develop a tolerance for it?

mathias-sager-hope-uncertainty-tolerance-ambiguity


The difference between ‘uncertainty’ and ‘ambiguity’

Intolerance of Uncertainty and Intolerance of Ambiguity often have been confused. Although IU and IA are overlapping concepts, they can be differentiated as follows: Intolerance of uncertainty refers future negative events that cause worries, and intolerance for ambiguity refers to adverse stimuli in the present [3]. Also, intolerance of uncertainty is built on the fact that information on outcomes of a situation is missing while intolerance for ambiguity is characterized by ambivalent or conflicting information available on the situation [5].

The effect of intolerance for uncertainty on tolerance for ambiguity

As per the discussion around the article https://www.mathias-sager.com/2018/06/12/tolerance-for-ambiguity-as-a-gateway-to-leadership-opportunity/ it became clear to me that tolerance for ambiguity respectively Intolerance for Ambiguity might be dependent a lot on context too. Thanks to all the involved for triggering that further research. While having assumed general business situations in times of relative peace in democratic countries in the last article, individual’s behavior in highly stressful (e.g., military) conditions in threatening environments needs to be looked at specifically, including both the concepts of uncertainty and ambiguity. I hope this article can contribute to that discussion.

Tolerance for ambiguity of an individual can be reduced in the context of threat through uncertainty, and especially when there is increased intolerance of uncertainty. In other words, in the light of uncertain future threatening outcomes, present ambiguous information is interpreted more negatively than it would be the case in a safe context [4]. Besides, not only the threat itself but the possibly stronger propagation of stereotyping (e.g., of enemies) might promote black-and-white thinking that is hindering an open mindset as required to positively decipher ambiguous information. People educated in open-mindedness and who have learned to tolerate ambiguity can better persevere in their tolerance even in situations of danger [7].

We generally have a choice between concern and cruelty. But as the example above showed, sometimes not-so-obvious factors influence our predispositions for one of the options because intolerance for an ambiguous situation, induced by threats of uncertainty, may trigger reactions of self-defense based on uncontrolled prejudices. Interviewing perpetrators in the Rwanda genocide revealed that individuals’ dependencies on hierarchical power caused closed mental systems unable to tolerate differences, ambiguities, and uncertainties [10].

Hope and resilience to endure uncertainty

In our times of continued pervasiveness of populations living in environments of war and disasters, resilience is a further important concept. Hope as related to resilience is enabling individuals to imagine a better future and to endure the present despite the uncertainty for such an achievement [9]. That way, the promotion of hope might be a useful approach to reduce uncertainty intolerance and consequently to increase the tolerance for ambiguity for a more open mindedness that leaves room for thoughtful and empathic decisions.

Growth versus safety orientation

Maslow (1968) made the point that we are oriented toward either growth or safety in our everyday lives and that a growth orientation is more favorable for psychological health and well-being [1]. When self-protection (needs) get reduced, self-awareness can arise and facilitate the appreciation of multiple possibilities in situations, which might be the stage of personal development where tolerance for ambiguity as the capacity to accept paradoxes starts to become feasible [2]. Systems of mass conformity, authoritarianism, and nationalism/racism are offered as a means for safety, unfortunately at the cost of growth possibilities through autonomy, creativity, and the use of reason though. After World War II this became evident and powerful movements toward an open mind of tolerance of ambiguity emerged that could cater to both safety and growth needs [8]. It is a function of societies to prepare the next generation for life, and it will be crucial how we instill hope and support our children to live constructively with uncertainties while retaining a high tolerance for ambiguity and open-mindedness as required to find the solutions sought for the benefit of all [6].

What are your learnings from uncertain/ambiguous situations and how did you learn to develop a tolerance for it?

 

References

[1] Maslow, A. H. (1968). Toward a Psychology of Being. New York: Van Nostrand Reinhold.

[2] Hartman, D., & Zimberoff, D. (2008). Higher Stages of Human Development. Journal Of Heart-Centered Therapies, 11(2), 3-95.

[3] Grenier, S., Barrette, A. M., & Ladouceur, R. (2005). Intolerance of Uncertainty and Intolerance of Ambiguity: Similarities and differences. PERSONALITY AND INDIVIDUAL DIFFERENCES, (3). 593.

[4] Neta, M., Cantelon, J., Haga, Z., Mahoney, C. R., Taylor, H. A., & Davis, F. C. (2017). The impact of uncertain threat on affective bias: Individual differences in response to ambiguity. Emotion, 17(8), 1137-1143. doi:10.1037/emo0000349

[5] Kirschner, H., Hilbert, K., Hoyer, J., Lueken, U., & Beesdo-Baum, K. (2016). Psychophsyiological reactivity during uncertainty and ambiguity processing in high and low worriers. Journal Of Behavior Therapy And Experimental Psychiatry, 5097-105. doi:10.1016/j.jbtep.2015.06.001

[6] Einwanger, J. (2014). Wie riskant ist Sicherheit? (German). Pädiatrie & Pädologie, 49(4), 33. doi:10.1007/s00608-014-0152-4

[7] Bright, L. K., & Mahdi, G. S. (2012). U.S./Arab Reflections on Our Tolerance for Ambiguity. Adult Learning, 23(2), 86-89.

[8] Rohde, J. (2015). Review of The open mind: Cold War politics and the sciences of human nature. Journal Of The History Of The Behavioral Sciences, 51(3), 343-345. doi:10.1002/jhbs.21739

[9] Wilson, M. J., & Arvanitakis, J. (2013). The Resilience Complex. M/C Journal, 16(5), 17.

[10] Böhm, T. (2006). Psychoanalytic aspects on perpetrators in genocide: Experiences from Rwanda. Scandinavian Psychoanalytic Review, 29(1), 22-32. doi:10.1080/01062301.2006.10592776

Tolerance for Ambiguity as a Gateway to Leadership Opportunity

mathias-sager-tolerance-for-ambiguity

The necessity for tolerance of ambiguity

Today’s professionals need to succeed in technology-rich environments [1]. Information age organizations are characterized by rapid change and uncertainty [2]. Progressing globalization poses challenges through ambiguities that are caused by ever novel, complex, and changing socio-economical, environmental, technological, and workforce factors [3]. The ability to tolerate ambiguity, therefore, is increasingly vital for successful leaders and employees alike [1].

Definition

“The tolerance for ambiguity (or intolerance for ambiguity) construct relates to a person’s disposition or tendency in addressing uncertain situations” [4, p.1]. The concept is also described in organizational behavior as “a coping mechanism for dealing with organizational change” [5].

Tolerance for ambiguity as a performance driver

Tolerance for ambiguity was found to support organizational performance drivers, such as [2]:

  • Mindfulness
  • Receptive for cross-cultural work and collaboration
  • Flexibility and adaptability
  • Tolerance for failure
  • Taking risks
  • Creativity and innovation
  • Monitoring self
  • Entrepreneurship, entrepreneurial performance, and
  • Managerial performance
  • A firm’s financial and market performance

Importance for (global) leadership

“Dealing with ambiguity is seldom taught, but higher-performing leaders tend to understand that uncertainty can be the gateway to opportunity” (6, p. 30).

Indeed, tolerance (or intolerance) for ambiguity influences one’s behavior and consequently leadership and decision-making style [4]. Studies have found that expatriates high on tolerance for ambiguity adjust and perform better in global work workplaces and cross-cultural environments [3].

Practicing tolerance for ambiguity

Leadership learning and development should adapt to the rapidly evolving business world, for example, by providing innovative learning strategies such as simulations [2]. Potential for improvement and learning progress related to tolerance for ambiguity can be measured with according psychometric assessments and accordingly monitored as a key leadership ability [3].

 

References

[1] Arlitsch, K. (2016). Tolerating Ambiguity: Leadership Lessons from Off-Road Motorcycling. Journal Of Library Administration, 56(1), 74-82. doi:10.1080/01930826.2015.1113063

[2] Brendel, W. )., Hankerson, S. )., Byun, S. )., & Cunningham, B. ). (2016). Cultivating leadership Dharma: Measuring the impact of regular mindfulness practice on creativity, resilience, tolerance for ambiguity, anxiety and stress. Journal Of Management Development, 35(8), 1056-1078. doi:10.1108/JMD-09-2015-0127

[3] Herman, J. L., Stevens, M. J., Bird, A., Mendenhall, M., & Oddou, G. (2010). The tolerance for ambiguity scale: Towards a more refined measure for international management research. International Journal Of Intercultural Relations, 34(1), 58-65. doi:10.1016/j.ijintrel.2009.09.004

[4] Kajs, L. T., & McCollum, D. L. (2009). Examining tolerance for ambiguity in the domain of educational leadership. Academy Of Educational Leadership Journal, 13(2), 1-16.

[5] Judge, T.A., Thoresen, C.J., Pucik, V. and Welbourne, T.M. (1999), “Managerial coping with organizational change: a dispositional perspective”, Journal of Applied Psychology, Vol. 84 No. 1, pp. 107-122, doi: 10.1037/0021-9010.84.1.107.

[6] Shullman, S. L., & White, R. P. (2012). Build Leadership’s Tolerance for Ambiguity. Chief Learning Officer, 11(10), 30-33.

Social Capital in Global Citizenship

mathias-sager-social-capital-mobiity

Content:

  • Matching national and organizational cultures
  • Prizing of social capital on individual, institutional, and societal levels
  • The ‘paradox of unsocial sociabilities’
  • Global citizenship, international careers, and the culture of global nomadism

Matching national and organizational culture

According to Nahapiet & Ghoshal (1998), social capital is “the sum of the actual and potential resources embedded within, available through, and derived from relationships” (as cited in [1]). However, it is not enough to design global leadership development programs with the goal to share knowledge according to national cultures in multinational enterprises (MNEs) without carefully making sure that the program also matches the organizational cultures involved (Espedal, Gooderham, & Stensaker, 2013).

Prizing of social capital on individual, institutional, and societal level

How the built social capital is prized depends on context. For example, Singaporean bureaucratic and political elite prizes social and cultural capital from the US, UK, and Western Europe highly as a result of Singapore’s unique history [3]. In academia, it is known that the apt use of researchers’ social capital in the form of international research networks helps significantly in achieving excellence [4]. On the other hand, global mobility experiences that come with a personal value such as new perspectives and knowledge about different cultures and systems can be not valuated as social or cultural capital by the home environment and therefore doesn’t get utilized by the respective institutions and organization [5]. There can be even biases on individual, organizational, and societal level because of strong interpersonal and intergroup processes preventing non-discriminatory perceptions of the intercultural aspects they are confronted with [6].

The ‘paradox of unsocial sociabilities’

The ‘paradox of unsocial sociabilities’ describes the behavior of individuals who aspire to grow their professional global connectivity but remain emotionally relatively uninvolved locally [3]. In the case of expatriates, they can be conflicted between resistance and acceptance of the new culture as part of incorporation its possibilities within themselves [7]. For people from collectivist cultures, the loss of their societal embeddedness might not be felt as compensated [7] by the newly gained increase of social capital from a global perspective. Money can replace social capital in the sense that knowledge transactions can be bought anywhere (e.g., banking, legal, and medical services, etc.), independent of location [8].

Global citizenship, international careers, and the culture of global nomadism

Social capital networks reinforce themselves [9] and education, financial means, and access to information and communication technology determine to what level talent can be optimized [10] . To get access to global social capital, globalized forms of education to foster global citizenship is recommended by the UN [11]. Often international assignments don’t necessarily lead to returns home and can result in onward mobility and international careers within a community, which shares a culture of global nomadism [12] that is of horizontal multi-cultural nature [13]. The alignment of an individual’s lifetime stages and an organization’s strategic direction can be helped through a mentoring, mutual help in storying and career/goal alignment that is managed by a well-integrated Talent and HR Management practice [14].

References

[1] Scullion, H., & Collings, D. G. (Eds.). (2011). Global talent management. Abington, UK: Routledge.

[2] Espedal, B., Gooderham, P. N., & Stensaker, I. G. (2013). Developing Organizational Social Capital or Prima Donnas in MNEs? The Role of Global Leadership Development Programs. Human Resource Management, 52(4), 607-625. doi:10.1002/hrm.21544

[3] Sidhu, R., Yeoh, B., & Chang, S. (2015). A Situated Analysis of Global Knowledge Networks: Capital Accumulation Strategies of Transnationally Mobile Scientists in Singapore. Higher Education: The International Journal Of Higher Education And Educational Planning, 69(1), 79-101.

[4] Jacob, M., & Meek, V. L. (2013). Scientific Mobility and International Research Networks: Trends and Policy Tools for Promoting Research Excellence and Capacity Building. Studies In Higher Education, 38(3), 331-344.

[5] Complex Professional Learning: Physicians Working for Aid Organisations. (2018). Professions & Professionalism, (1), doi:10.7577/pp.2002

[6] Carr, S. C. (2010). The psychology of global mobility (pp. 259-278). New York: Springer.

[7] Soong, H., Stahl, G., & Shan, H. (2018). Transnational Mobility through Education: A Bourdieusian Insight on Life as Middle Transnationals in Australia and Canada. Globalisation, Societies And Education, 16(2), 241-253.

[8] Minina, A. (2015). Home is Where the Money is: Financial Consumption in Global Mobility. Advances In Consumer Research, 43393-398.

[9] Young, J. (2017). All the World’s a School. Management In Education, 31(1), 21-26.

[10] Yaffe, D., & Educational Testing, S. (2011). “Optimizing Talent: Closing Educational and Social Mobility Gaps Worldwide”–A Salzburg Global Seminar. Policy Notes. Volume 19, Number 2, Spring 2011.

[11] Gardner-McTaggart, A. (2016). International Elite, or Global Citizens? Equity, Distinction and Power: The International Baccalaureate and the Rise of the South. Globalisation, Societies And Education, 14(1), 1-29.

[12] Findlay, A., Prazeres, L., McCollum, D., & Packwood, H. (2017). ‘It was always the plan’: international study as ‘learning to migrate’. Area, 49(2), 192-199.

[13] Colomer, L. (2017). Heritage on the move. Cross-cultural heritage as a response to globalisation, mobilities and multiple migrations. International Journal Of Heritage Studies, 23(10), 913-927. doi:10.1080/13527258.2017.1347890

[14] Kirk, S. (2016). Career capital in global Kaleidoscope Careers: The role of HRM. The International Journal Of Human Resource Management, 27(6), 681-697. doi:10.1080/09585192.2015.1042896

 

Mobility and Global Talent Management (GTM) Strategies

mobility-expatriation

Summary. The increasing number of expatriates reflects the need for multinational enterprises (MNEs) to compete in a global knowledge economy. Despite high pressure, mobility program cost management practices are often weakly formalized. To take full advantage of international assignments, the assignees’ gained knowledge should be matched with required job competencies. The ratio of parent-country nationals (PCNs) at subsidiaries is influencing business performance. Also, besides defensive and retaliatory actions, relational measures can be used to maintain access to social capital in case of poaching in the host country. Finally, intercultural training based on clearly defined goals for business and leadership development purposes can increase the success rate of international assignment significantly.


Over 200 million extra-national employees worldwide

The number of employees assigned to foreign countries in 2013 was 214 million people, tendency increasing [1]. This article focuses in places on a multinational enterprises (MNEs) setting of interdisciplinary digital businesses from a Japan perspective (with global reach) that is heavily relying on knowledge and relationship-based intangible data assets.

Room to evolve in aligning the role of mobility with talent management

The information technology industry continues to be a growing sector with fierce competition and cost pressures [2]. While almost half of IT companies do not systematically measure international assignment costs, companies respond sensitively to cost factors. For example, as a reaction to surging residence costs for expatriates, Japanese companies in 2014 sent 10,000 employees less to China than still in 2012 when the number was at 57,000 [3]. Also, an international assignee attrition rate that could be problematic for a company when too high seems to exist in the IT sector, with survey results reporting a 25% of assignee loss as compared to overall survey respondents’ average of 14%. Generally, assignee’s increase market value serves as an explanation for their moving on to better career opportunities outside of the firm. The Japanese tenure- rather than market-value-based employment system [4] could mitigate that risk though. On the other hand, some Japanese expats may not return due to concerns with too much discriminating, rigorous, and long working hours required in the Japanese working world, as a popular Japanese blog suggests [5]. In any case, to mutually benefit from mobility programs, both the employee and the firm should be able to count on HR’s ability to match the expatriate’s knowledge with job’s required competencies [6]. Furuya (2007) suggested the deliberate and proactive use of appropriate HR policies and practices (e.g., job analysis) that help realize the advantages of global assignments [7]. Indeed, successful mobility has become a barrier for Japanese MNEs; yet formal programs are rarely in place [8].

One out of five Global Mobility Trends IT sector survey participants responded that they do not know their business need for internationally experienced talents [2]. Not enough parent country nationals (PCNs) at subsidiaries is curbing business performance; too many PCNs, however, let performance decline due to increasing resistance against loss of local identity [9]. The APAC region’s (IT) companies see Brazil and second, Taiwan as their favorite destinations for foreign assignments beyond 2015 [2]. From a host country’s perspective, e.g., Taiwanese firms seek Japanese employees’ knowledge [10] and increasingly poach Japanese workers [11]. For MNEs, relational actions such as alumni to keep access to human social capital might be an additional alternative to overly defensive or punitive measures [12].

Need for intercultural training

20% of international assignees reported difficulties in acclimating to the new culture. Also, people from strong cultures like China and Japan tend to stick with their compatriots [13]. Therefore, intercultural training [2] and/or timely termination (in case of issues) of expatriate projects are crucial to avoid relational damage [6]. Also, separate but integral goals and strategies for business and talent development should be defined in Japanese MNEs mobility programs [14]. Sufficient language proficiency has to be fostered too to enable an efficient knowledge transfer [15].

References

[1] Employee Mobility and Talent Management. (2013, September). The magazine of the British Chamber of Commerce in Japan. Retrieved from https://bccjacumen.com/employee-mobility-and-talent-management/

[2] BGRS. (2016). Global Mobility Trends. Insight into how 163 Global Mobility leaders view the future of talent mobility. Retrieved from http://globalmobilitytrends.bgrs.com/#/data-highlights

[3] Cho, Y. (2016, July 07). Japanese expats being priced out of Shanghai. Nikkei Asian Review. Retrieved from https://asia.nikkei.com/Economy/Japanese-expats-being-priced-out-of-Shanghai

[4] Watanabe, M., & Miyadera, H. (2017, October 11). Moving Past Japan’s Archaic Employment Practices. Brink Asia. Retrieved from https://www.brinknews.com/asia/moving-past-japans-archaic-employment-practices/

[5] Lund, E. (2016, Jan. 30). 5 reasons why Japanese expats say sayonara to their homeland for good. Japan Today. Retrieved from https://japantoday.com/category/features/lifestyle/5-reasons-why-japanese-expats-say-sayonara-to-their-homeland-for-good

[6] Tungli, Z., & Peiperl, M. (2009). Expatriate practices in German, Japanese, U.K., and U.S. multinational companies: a comparative survey of changes. Human Resource Management, 48(1), 153-171.

[7] Furuya, N. (2007). The effects of HR policies and repatriate self-adjustment on global competency transfer. Asia Pacific Journal Of Human Resources, 45(1), 6-23.

[8] Global & Regional Mobility for Japanese MNCs – Leverage your talent pool in Asia. (n.d.). Mercer. Retrieved from https://www.mercer.co.jp/events/2016-jmnc-iap-rap-seminar-singapore-en.html

[9] Ando, N., & Paik, Y. (2014). Effects of two staffing decisions on the performance of MNC subsidiaries. Journal Of Global Mobility, (1), 85. doi:10.1108/JGM-08-2013-0051

[10] Kang, B., Sato, Y., & Ueki, Y. (2018). Mobility of Highly Skilled Retirees from Japan to Korea and Taiwan. Pacific Focus, 33(1), 58. doi:10.1111/pafo.12108

[11] Tabata, M. (2012). The Absorption of Japanese Engineers into Taiwan’s TFT-LCD Industry. Asian Survey, 52(3), 571-594.

[12] Scullion, H., & Collings, D. G. (Eds.). (2011). Global talent management. Abington, UK: Routledge.

[13] Holmes, R. (2016, June 6). Innovating mobility services in Asia Pacific. Relocate global. Retrieved from https://www.relocatemagazine.com/innovating-mobility-services-in-asia-pacific-rholmes.html

[14] Jagger, P. (2017, March 23). Bridging East to West – Japan Inc’s Top 3 HR Priorities for The Year Ahead. Retrieved from https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/bridging-east-west-japan-incs-top-3-hr-priorities-year-pichaya-jagger/

[15] Peltokorpi, V. (2015). Corporate Language Proficiency and Reverse Knowledge Transfer in Multinational Corporations: Interactive Effects of Communication Media Richness and Commitment to Headquarters. Journal Of International Management, 2149-62. doi:10.1016/j.intman.2014.11.003

Reverse Mentoring and its Benefits

mathias-sager-reverse-mentoring copy

Traditional mentoring

Self-improvement can be intimidating, and personal interactions with other, like in a mentoring relationship might be extraordinarily valuable [1]. In today’s fast-changing world the potential for mentoring, especially if creatively employed, might be an increasingly useful type of relationship [2]. Yet relatively few employees got into a company mentoring program [3]. Traditional mentoring generally takes place between a senior and a junior person in a similar career field [4], a relationship that is hierarchical and one-directional in the sense that the mentor in its expert position carries the power while the newcomer mentee is deemed to receive learning [5].

Reverse mentoring for diversity and organizational success

Reverse mentoring, on the other side, can be defined as “pair[ing] younger, junior employees as mentors with older, senior colleagues as mentees to share knowledge” ([6], p. 569). Jack Welch in 1999 made this approach popular when using it in GE [7]. It is the first time that four or five generation with distinct values work in the same workplaces and have to manage related generational tensions ([8]; [9]). Reverse (respectively reciprocal) mentoring may be promising transfer processes to support global expatriate female managers as they were found to receive less monitoring than male and domestic colleagues [10]. Cross-racial reverse mentoring is another example of engaging diversity to increase organizational success [6].

Benefits for the employees

Reverse mentoring was found to benefit older adults with reduced social isolation, improved self-efficacy, and increased technological understanding, and younger colleagues can progress their teaching and communication skills [11]. Intriguingly, by collaboratively fostering the understanding of each generations qualities, inter-generational intelligence can be built [9]. Vitality, enthusiasm, and creativity are predominantly represented by the younger, lower levels of organizations; not surprising when remembering the evidence that toddlers, in general, are creative, compared to the only 2% of 44-year-olds [12]. Reverse mentoring is promising in generating new ideas [13], which is vital in valuing the human capital and use it for innovation and competitiveness as required for learning organizations [14]. Lane (2018) speculates that this effect might be the more pronounced, the bigger and the more global a firm is [7].

HR supported implementation for improved employee retention

In a study in the field of academic medicine, it was found that half of the recipients of unsatisfactory mentoring did genuinely consider quit the firm, while positive mentoring experiences reduced this number to 14% [2]. In another study reverse mentoring predicted increased affective commitment potentially decreasing turnover rates among millennial employees [15]. While informal settings may take pressure away from younger persons mentoring their superiors [16], more formal mentoring provides for clear objectives and plans how to achieve them [17]. It is essential that older leaders get the courage [13] to open up, demonstrate humility, and enter into egalitarian relationships [18]. Ideally, such openness and the diversification of the workforce [19] through reverse mentoring is systematically supported by HR too [20].

References

[1] Bollig, J. (2016). What Company Do You Keep?. Superintendent, 32.

[2] Disch, J. (2018). Rethinking Mentoring. Critical Care Medicine, 46(3), 437-441. doi:10.1097/CCM.0000000000002914

[3] Bergelson, M. (2014). Developing Tomorrow’s Leaders: Innovative Approaches to Mentorship. People & Strategy, 37(2), 18-22.

[4] Ellis, R. (2013). Reverse mentoring: Letting millennials lead the way. T And D, 67(9), 13.

[5] Morris, L. V. (2017). Reverse Mentoring: Untapped Resource in the Academy?. INNOVATIVE HIGHER EDUCATION -NEW YORK-, (4). 285.

[6] Marcinkus, Murphy W. (2012). Reverse mentoring at work: Fostering cross-generational learning and developing millennial leaders. Human Resource Management, 51(4), 549-573. doi:10.1002/hrm.21489

[7] Lane, G. (2018). REVERSE MENTORING. Professional Manager, 7-8.

[8] Stephenson, G. (2014). Breaking traditions with reciprocal mentoring. Nursing Management, 45(6), 10-12. doi:10.1097/01.NUMA.0000449766.91747.77

[9] Meister, J. C. (2017). 4 Ways Companies Are Developing Millennials for the New World Of Work. Communication World, 1-3.

[10] Harvey, M., McIntyre, N., Thompson,  H. J., & Moeller, M. (2009). Mentoring global female managers in the global marketplace: traditional, reverse, and reciprocal mentoring. International Journal Of Human Resource Management, 20(6), 1344-1361. doi:10.1080/09585190902909863

[11] Breck, B., Dennis, C., & Leedahl, S. (2018). Implementing reverse mentoring to address social isolation among older adults. Journal Of Gerontological Social Work, 1-13. doi:10.1080/01634372.2018.1448030

[12] Walton, C. (2018). Lifting the lid on creativity. Training Journal, 24-26.

[13] Gardiner, B. (2015). RBA embraces competition and reverse mentoring to drive innovation. Cio (13284045), 1.

[14] Barrett, B. (2013). Creating Virtual Mentoring Programs for Developing Intellectual Capital. Proceedings Of The International Conference On Intellectual Capital, Knowledge Management & Organizational Learning, 47-53.

[15] Catrin, H. (2017). Affective Commitment to Organizations: A Comparison Study of Reverse Mentoring Versus Traditional Mentoring Among Millennials. Binus Business Review, Vol 8, Iss 2, Pp 157-165 (2017), (2), 157. doi:10.21512/bbr.v8i2.3666

[16] Pieters, B. (2011). Reverse Mentoring: Fresh Perspectives from Future Leaders. Profiles In Diversity Journal, 13(6), 68.

[17] Jane, B. (2014). Reverse mentoring becomes a two-way street: case study of a mentoring project for IT competence. Development And Learning In Organizations: An International Journal, (3), 13. doi:10.1108/DLO-01-2014-0001

[18] Thoman, R. (2009). Reverse mentoring: How young leaders can transform the church and why we should let them. Christian Education Journal, 6(2), 432-436.

[19] Holden, L., Rumala, B., Carson, P., & Siegel, E. (2014). Promoting careers in health care for urban youth: What students, parents and educators can teach us. Information Services & Use, 34(3/4), 355-366. doi:10.3233/ISU-140761

[20] Chen, Y. (2013). Effect of Reverse Mentoring on Traditional Mentoring Functions. Leadership & Management In Engineering, 13(3), 199-208. doi:10.1061/(ASCE)LM.1943-5630.0000227

What do younger talents want?

mathias-sager-youth-young-talent-china-employee

Summary. Younger employees around the world tend to prefer more professional freedom, meaningful work, and work-life in their work. Asking only older senior HR managers might not provide sufficient insight into the generation Y’s thinking though. Listening directly to the younger employees is vital to positively influence job satisfaction, engagement, and work performance altogether. The youth’s resourcefulness, e.g., in digital media, could be used for backward/reverse mentoring to engage senior management more. Offering millennials more short-term job and internship opportunities can represent a win-win situation to gain experience from both an organizational and young talent perspective. Some examples from a Chinese perspective are presented. 


Work ethics and quality of life values

Many of the so-called gold-collar workers (GCW) who demonstrate qualities such as high problem-solving abilities in challenging environments but are also used to extraordinary financial compensation, started to quit their positions in prominent Chinese cities to seek improved work-life balance, including, e.g., increased learning and development opportunities [1]. Today’s younger generations in China, while navigating the collectivist society, can also require, even from authorities, more radical openness and honesty, especially in case of perceived unfairness [2]. Researchers found that more professional freedom, meaningful work, and work-life balance constitute job characteristics increasingly crucial as a high-level tendency across different cultures [3]. Varying work values still need to be differentiated between even various countries in East Asia itself. For example, the Chinese tend to be more individualistic, while the Japanese are more risk-averse, and the Koreans are often found somewhat in the middle [4].

Insight-led Global Talent Management (GTM) and backward/reverse mentoring

Best practice Global Talent Management (GTM) in Asia is best led by insight into economic and cultural context [2], including the specific understanding of the youth. When re-assessing HR practices, consulting only with older senior management personnel might not provide sufficient and accurate insight into the thinking of the generation Y employees [5]. A demographic shift also takes place in China where the proportion of the population of over sixty-five years is growing, which is resulting in a shrinking workforce with implication for how to manage the pool of younger talents [6]. Cooperative re-negotiation of employee structures and roles within firms might be needed. The Gallup’s global employee engagement database reveals that two-thirds of Asian CEO’s are not engaged and often feel underdeveloped [7]. Bringing together the younger generations’ digital talent and the older colleagues rich experience in a kind of backward/reverse mentoring would offer an exciting approach [2].

Short and long-term view for win-win situations

Millennials often plan differently for their future, meaning that they seek more short-term employment (i.e., of one to two years length) to gain experience at the beginning of their career [8]. Consequently, talent management practices have to deal with more employee turnover. However, especially when talent acquisition is challenged due to a lack of matching organizational demand and graduate skills, short-term assignments might offer a win-win situation overall. This is the reason why both firms and candidates see internships as an ideal avenue at professional career start [9].

Empowering the youth

For the youth being able to bring their potential to the table, managers self-identified their central role as empowering their talents in furthering self-esteem and self-promotion capability [10]. For GTM, listening to the younger generation and consider their expectations is vital to positively influence job satisfaction, engagement, and work performance altogether [3].

References

[1] Roongrerngsuke, S., & Liefooghe, A. (2013). Attracting Gold-Collar Workers: Comparing Organizational Attractiveness and Work-Related Values across Generations in China, India and Thailand. Asia Pacific Business Review, 19(3), 337-355.

[2] Claire, M. (2011). Lessons from the East: next generation HR in Asia. Strategic HR Review, (4), 11. doi:10.1108/14754391111140954

[3] Walk, M., Handy, F., & Schinnenburg, H. (2013). What do talents want? Work expectations in India, China, and Germany. Zeitschrift Fur Personalforschung, 27(3), 251-278.

[4] Froese, F. J. (2013). Work values of the next generation of business leaders in Shanghai, Tokyo, and Seoul. Asia Pacific Journal Of Management, 30(1), 297-315. doi:10.1007/s10490-011-9271-7

[5] Lynton, N., & Beechler, S. (2012). Using Chinese Managerial Values to Win the War for Talent. Asia Pacific Business Review, 18(4), 567-585.

[6] Jackson, K. (2017). Demographic shift: implications for employment policy development in the Asia-Pacific. Asia Pacific Business Review, 23(5), 738-742. doi:10.1080/13602381.2017.1295558

[7] Ratanjee, V. (2014). Bridging the Leadership Gap in Asia. Gallup Business Journal, 4.

[8] Groden, C. (2016). Five Things You Can Do to Attract Millennial Talent. Fortune International (Asia), 173(4), 182.

[9] Rose, P. (2013). Internships: Tapping into China’s next generation of talent. Asia-Pacific Journal Of Cooperative Education, 14(2), 89-98.

[10] Middleton, J. (2012). secrets to tapping the talent in young Pacific people. Human Resources Magazine, 17(1), 34-35.

Global Talent Management (GTM) in China: Between Globalization and Tradition

China global talent management

Summary. Although multi-national enterprises (MNEs) in China are looking for talents who can balance domestic and international challenges, the evolving education and Global Talent Management (GTM) systems struggle with the timely identification, development, and retention of a workforce that is matching the required demand of new and future skills. Respect for the Chinese culture and access to so-called guanxi business networks shaped by collectivist cultural values are needed to access business opportunities. On the other hand, the opening up of secretive circles and empowering students and employees for more self-determined and problem-based learning could provide avenues to close the gap between theory and practice as well as more equality in talent development, hopefully resulting in increased entrepreneurship and innovation.

Continue reading Global Talent Management (GTM) in China: Between Globalization and Tradition

Global Mindset in Japan: A Critical Evaluation

mathias-sager-global-mindset-japan

Summary. This article critically sheds light on current socio-economic challenges for Japan and the need for developing a global mindset for companies in a globalizing world. With little chance for getting a management position before the age of 40 and confronted with dominating domestic demand for a monolingual male workforce, Japan’s youth gets blamed for being ‘insular’ and individually responsible for the lack of global mindsets. To improve global success, Japanese HR practices’ global talent management programs have to address the need for highly skilled and globally minded talents in Japan and their expatriates. Japan-specific, step-by-step, and creative alternative solutions may be required to make it happen.


 

Japan’s current unclear development of its role in global economy comes from various challenges such as two decades lasting economic stagnation [1] and increased competition from China and India [2]. Salary men sweat devotedly for the big companies and government agencies for the return of stable careers, while their wives take care of raising the next generation guaranteeing the continuation of the system that has become antithetical to fast-paced global changes [2]. A global mindset is needed for many Japanese organization, and there are calls for a related shift in education ([3]; [4]). However, most Japanese companies favor domestic monolingual male workforce [5], which informs higher education in the way that fewer and fewer students in Japan envision to study abroad [6]. The collectivist Japanese culture might emphasize that trend as the unity of family raises expectations for children not to stay away from their family and take care of their parents [7].

Japanese see the development of a global mindset as an individual rather than an organizational burden. Due to seniority-based promotion systems, only 9% of Japanese managers are below the age of 40, compared to 62% in India and 76% in China [1]. Ironically, the lack of talents with global mindsets has not been associated with strict hiring practices, bigoted immigration policies, or with conservative firm cultures but instead the ‘insular’ young people, the so-called ‘uchimuki,’ are blamed for keeping the island inwardly retreated [8].

Japanese HRM practices’ global talent management initiatives have been reported to not being suitable to attract sufficient talent with a global mindset for multinational enterprises [9]. English in Japan is still treated as belonging to the US or UK rather than being a global language [8]. HR brokers until today have mostly focused on low-skilled short-term immigration [10]. Therefore, not surprisingly, Japan ranks last behind all major industrialized nations regarding the percentage of foreign academics and engineers employed [11].

A trend of an increasing number of Japanese self-initiated expatriate entrepreneurs to developing countries in Asia indicates the presence of not only entrepreneurial but also global mindsets as related to social and sustainability missions [12]. Japanese multinationals, however, comparatively have difficulties to go international with their often highly successful local businesses in which the home-country expatriates obviously need to re-assess their globalization abilities [13]. For example, Japanese business men are used to relationship-based marketing [14] and would need to adapt to a more need-based style when selling abroad [7]. Maybe hybrid forms of globalization activities, developed through Japan-based HR training can advance the integration of cultural differences to promote global success [1]. Anti-globalization sentiments after the nuclear plant accident in Fukushima in 2011 and perceptions of unfairly exploitative global businesses may require an alternative kind of globalization as happening in the arts that, e.g., builds on alternative smaller destinations [15]. Step-by-step quick wins could increase confidence in more long-term investment into global mindsets to improve results from globalization [16].

References

[1] Ananthram, S., Pick, D., & Issa, T. (2012). Antecedents of a Global Mindset: A Mixed Method Analysis of Indian, Chinese and Japanese Managers. Contemporary Management Research, 8(4), 305-329.

[2] Ananthram, S., Grainger, R., & Tominaga, H. (2014). Constituents of a global mindset: an empirical study with Japanese managers. Japan Studies Review, 91-114.

[3] Li, S. (2014). The Conversion of Homogeneous State to Global Society: The Changes in Japan from a Higher Education Perspective. Procedia Social And Behavioral Sciences, 140(1), 553.

[4] Danielewicz-Betz, A., & Kawaguchi, T. (2014). Preparing Engineering Students for Global Workplace Communication: Changing the Japanese Mindsets. International Journal Of Engineering Pedagogy, 4(1), 55-68. doi:10.3991/ijep.v4i1.3297

[5] Kobayashi, Y. (2013). Global English Capital and the Domestic Economy: The Case of Japan from the 1970s to early 2012. Journal Of Multilingual And Multicultural Development, 34(1), 1-13.

[6] Normile, D. (2015). Japan looks to instill global mindset in grads. Science, 347(6225), 937.

[7] Michaeli, M., Lazo, A., Thao Phung, N., Moussavi, M., & Steinberg, H. (2017). Global Cultural and Accounting Difference between Japan and the USA. Allied Academies International Conference: Proceedings Of The Academy Of Accounting & Financial Studies (AAFS), 22(1), 22.

[8] Burgess, C. (2015). To Globalise or Not to Globalise? “Inward-Looking Youth” as Scapegoats for Japan’s Failure to Secure and Cultivate “Global Human Resources”. Globalisation, Societies And Education, 13(4), 487-507.

[9] Furusawa, M., & Brewster, C. (2015). The bi-cultural option for global talent management: the Japanese / Brazilian Nikkeijin example. Journal Of World Business, 50(1), 133-143. doi:10.1016/j.jwb.2014.02.005

[10] Conrad, H., & Meyer-Ohle, H. (2018). Brokers and the Organization of Recruitment of ‘Global Talent’ by Japanese Firms–A Migration Perspective. Social Science Japan Journal, 21(1), 67. doi:10.1093/ssjj/jyx032

[11] Oishi, N. (2013). Migration and competitiveness in science and engineering in Japan. Migration Letters, 10(2), 228-244.

[12] Yokoyama, K., & Birchley, S. L. (2018). Mindset and Social Entrepreneurship: Japanese Self-initiated Expatriate Entrepreneurs in Cambodia. Journal Of Entrepreneurship And Innovation In Emerging Economies, 4(1), 68.

[13] Black, J. S., & Morrison, A. J. (2012). The Japanese Global Leadership Challenge: What It Means for the Rest of the World. Asia Pacific Business Review, 18(4), 551-566.

[14] Yang, L., & Peter R.J., T. (2008). The link between cultural value systems and strategic marketing : Unlocking the mindset of Japanese and South Korean managers. Cross Cultural Management: An International Journal, (1), 62. doi:10.1108/13527600810848836

[15] Mōri, Y. (2015). New collectivism, participation and politics after the East Japan Great Earthquake. World Art, 5(1), 167.

[16] Yamada, K. (2016). Financing Sustainable Development with Enhanced Domestic Resource Mobilization: Transitional Role of International Cooperation. Asia-Pacific Development Journal, 23(2), 61-80.

Job analysis and its role in global talent management (Incl. insights from Japan)

1. The role of job analysis in Global Talent Management

2. Japanese tendencies and the focus on people vs. positions

3. Towards systematic talent identification

mathias-sager-talent-identification.jpg


1. The role of job analysis in Global Talent Management

The identification of talent is a central aspect of Global Talent Management (GTM) practices in multinational enterprises (MNE’s) [1]. Job analysis respectively competency analysis constitutes a required input for talent identification [2]. However, traditional job analysis that has represented a fundamental necessity for many HR activities seems to have become increasingly outdated [3]. Indeed, the number of current articles about job analysis is decreasing, while, in contrast, related fields such as competency modeling and work analysis describing more broadly and evolving organizational roles are trending [4]. The relative popularity of competency models may be explained by its alignment with organizational strategy and related performance goals [3].

The diminishing relevance of the use of job analysis results such as job descriptions, may come from the shift towards recruitment strategies that are led not by vacancies but rather by onboarding talents to be able to fill strategic roles when they arise. Therefore, rather than looking at existing job tasks, companies strategically may look, especially concerning their leadership competency profiles, for visionary talents who are well connected, cross-culturally skilled, and whose values match well with the firm culture [1].

Another essential consideration in evaluating the utility of job analysis in Talent Management is the level of detail that is elaborated to describe job requirements. While more holistic approaches result in more generic and abstract information convince through their cost-efficiency, the gathering of more detailed data is supporting the judgment process of what specifics contribute to the overall ratings of importance [5]. Researchers argue that the psychometric quality of competency models decline when judgments are based on broad job descriptions [3].

2. Japanese tendencies and the focus on people vs. positions

Japanese talent acquisition practices are strongly shaped by domestic approaches [6], which the interview results of this study also confirm. The identification of skills, abilities, knowledge and other characteristics (KSAOs) informs talents identification. Although methods such as, e.g., job analysis [1] focusing on jobs as a starting point for Talent Management are a promoted view [7], Japanese (multinational) companies tend to work the other way around, i.e., starting with people and then figuring out where to go with the workforce.

The concept of lifetime employment is still alive in Japan. When keeping people is an overarching goal of an organization, job descriptions, and missing job descriptions respectively would limit maneuvering room. Line managers’ expectation rather than job requirement and talent assessment documentation is determining who’s considered to be a talent suitable for what position. This relational focus on work, however, is an important aspect of complex job roles in general and everywhere [8]. However, a tendency towards influencing employee behavior subjectively from manager’s perspective versus a more objective reliance on job descriptions [9] was identified a specific feature of Japanese talent management.

While modern talent approaches may shift from input to a more output-oriented view [7], past achievements (e.g., education and type of university), as well as seniority, are decisive for the employee payments and promotions [10]. On the other side, HR positions often get occupied by staff who is rotated, even against their will. The interview repeatedly pointed to the need for more education to address the lack of HR and talent management capabilities as measured against good global practices and evidenced anecdotic by especially young talents who seem to expect more consideration for their career aspirations. As for job analysis, inexperience, in contrast to carelessness, would not necessarily have to result in low quality judgments though [5].

3. Towards systematic talent identification

Job analysis can uncover needs for improvement in work environments [11] and have positive effects on talent management, such as objective and talent-focusing development. Improper job descriptions leaving employees unclear about their duties and competencies can also lead to legal issues [12]. As, for example, Hitachi demonstrated, the implementation of systematic talent identification and evaluation can improve multinational operations [10]. Albeit talent selection by fixed job characteristics might have become an insufficient method [13], the usage of some work profiles to create good matches between individuals and jobs would be advantageous for staff and organizations alike [14]. A better (psychological) understanding of strategic jobs from an organization’s HR perspective would for sure help underline the importance of talent management [15] in achieving the increasingly complex and global organizational goals.

References

[1] Scullion, H., & Collings, D. G. (Eds.). (2011). Global talent management. Abington, UK: Routledge.

[2] Lucie, V., Hana, U., & Helena, S. (2016). Identification and Development of Key Talents through Competency Modelling in Agriculture Companies. Acta Universitatis Agriculturae Et Silviculturae Mendelianae Brunensis, Vol 64, Iss 4, Pp 1409-1419 (2016), (4), 1409. doi:10.11118/actaun201664041409

[3] Stevens, G. W. (2013). A critical review of the science and practice of competency modeling. Human Resource Development Review : HRD Review, 12(1), 86-107.

[4] Sanchez, J. I., & Levine, E. L. (2012). The Rise and Fall of Job Analysis and the Future of Work Analysis. Annual Review Of Psychology, 63(1), 397-425. doi:10.1146/annurev-psych-120710-100401

[5] Morgeson, F. P., Spitzmuller, M., Garza, A. S., & Campion, M. A. (2016). Pay Attention! The Liabilities of Respondent Experience and Carelessness When Making Job Analysis Judgments. Journal Of Management, 42(7), 1904. doi:10.1177/0149206314522298

[6] Conrad, H., & Meyer-Ohle, H. (2017). Overcoming the ethnocentric firm? – foreign fresh university graduate employment in Japan as a new international human resource development method. International Journal Of Human Resource Management, 1-19. doi:10.1080/09585192.2017.1330275

[7] Henry Stewart Talks (Producer) (2012) David Collings: Talent management [Online video]. Retrieved from http://hstalks.com.ezproxy.liv.ac.uk/main/view_talk.php?t=2206&r=587&c=250

[8] Schein, E. H., & Van Maanen, J. (2016). Career anchors and job/role planning: Tools for career and talent management. Organizational Dynamics, 45(3), 165-173. doi:10.1016/j.orgdyn.2016.07.002

[9] Sanchez, J., & Levine, E. (2009). What is (or should be) the difference between competency modelling and traditional job analysis? Human Resource Management Review, 19(2), 53–63.

[10] Yamaguchi, T. (2014). Standardizing HR Practices Around the World. Harvard Business Review, 92(9), 80-81.

[11] Ishihara, I., Yoshimine, T., Horikawa, J., Majima, Y., Kawamoto, R., & Salazar, M. (2004). Defining the roles and functions of occupational health nurses in Japan: results of job analysis. AAOHN Journal, 52(6), 230-241.

[12] Smith, K. J. (2015). Conducting Thorough Job Analyses and Drafting Lawful Job Descriptions. Employment Relations Today (Wiley), 41(4), 95-99. doi:10.1002/ert.21479

[13] Using Rough Set Theory to Recruit and Retain High-Potential Talents for Semiconductor Manufacturing. (2007). IEEE Transactions on Semiconductor Manufacturing, Semiconductor Manufacturing, IEEE Transactions on, IEEE Trans. Semicond. Manufact, (4), 528. doi:10.1109/TSM.2007.907630

[14] Sharp, P. (2011). The LIFE Technique – Creating a Personal Work Profile. Electronic Journal Of Knowledge Management, 9(1), 57-72.

[15] Becker, B. E., & Huselid, M. A. (2010). SHRM and job design: Narrowing the divide. Journal Of Organizational Behavior, 31(2-3), 379-388. doi:10.1002/job.640

Talent (on other than the individual level)

mathias-sager-team-talent.jpg

Some job performances (e.g., the financial results created by investment bankers) is often depending on external factors and is therefore at least difficult to explain and can serve as a reminder that causes of performance often need to be found on other than the individual level alone. This is interesting as it leads to less intuitive notions of talent such as team talent. Also, example conditions under which collective talent may develop best are discussed in this article.

Talent analytics and the search for the ‘why’

Big data analysis can reveal accurate prediction of outcomes, but it often cannot provide meaningful insight into and interpretation of the underlying or antecedent causes. Talent Analytics (TA) is considered a promising use of big data in HR management [1]. Obstacles such as breaking through data silos need to be overcome to harness the full potential of big data analysis. The same might be true for understanding more complex interdependencies that lead to organizational performance. Not only individual performance but the environment in which it occurs is determining results. For example, N’Cho (2017) has found that companies with more audit committee members were able to create higher profits; possibly a non-intuitive fact for many.

Team talent

The most innovative shop doesn’t generate revenues without marketing [2]. From an organizational perspective, team talent as distinctive to individual talent may be an interesting concept in the way that it is a team commonality. Consequently, group incentives have proven to increase the efficiency of collective efforts (e.g., through reduction of so-called free riding), especially in the knowledge economy [3]. Evidence of studies of Major League Baseball teams also supports the concept of team talent. Allocation of profits is closely linked with the distribution of productivity, and it seems that eliminating weak links in favor of a more homogeneous team is significantly driving team improvement [4]. The celebration of stars should not neglect the appreciation of the importance of the supporting B players as they overall contribute far more to a firm’s durable performance [5]. According to the Peter Principle, leaders often remain at positions in which they are overwhelmed, an impression the financial crisis could not correct. From that perspective, it’s not the leaders who matter, but the people who are competently doing their job [6].

Encouraging and competitive environments

There is compelling evidence that trust between managers and staff dramatically increase shareholder return. If employees are not regarded as relatively fixed resources to exploit, but rather as a human potential to develop [7], their performance increases [8]. Talent has become an even more valuable asset than capital itself [9] and needs to be kept free, encouraged, and heard because control is diminishing is potential [10] However, in contrast, on CEO level, competition to control for the risk of misreporting showed to be good advice [11].

Entrepreneurial talent

Entrepreneurial talent that is mainly characterized by a well-connected network around the company founders was identified to account for the organizations’ profitability and financial success [12]. In that sense, entrepreneurial talent provides another example for relationships with factors other than skill-level measures that determine talent and related business performance.

Photo credit: geralt (pixabay.com)

References

[1] N’Cho, J. (2017). Contribution of talent analytics in change management within project management organizations The case of the French aerospace sector. Procedia Computer Science, 121625. doi:10.1016/j.procs.2017.11.082

[2] Loyd, S. (2002). Has talent, needs customers : An engineering lab profits from its first strategy experiments. Strategy & Leadership, (3), 34. doi:10.1108/10878570210427936

[3] Meagher, K., & Prasad, S. (2016). Career concerns and team talent. Journal Of Economic Behavior And Organization, 1291-17. doi:10.1016/j.jebo.2016.05.019

[4] Schmidt, M. B. (2009). The nonlinear behavior of competition: the impact of talent compression on competition. Journal Of Population Economics, 22(1), 57-74. doi:10.1007/s00148-006-0104-9

[5] DeLong, T. J., & Vijayaraghavan, V. (2003). Let’s Hear It for B Players. Harvard Business Review, 81(6), 96-102.

[6] Why Incompetents Will Always Rule the World. (2009). Inc, 31(3), 22.

[7] People principle will reap rewards Why people and strategy are not mutually exclusive. (2002). PERSONNEL TODAY -SUTTON-, 16.

[8] Steenburgh, T., & Ahearne, M. (2012). Motivating Salespeople: What Really Works. Harvard Business Review, 90(7/8), 70-75.

[9] Martin, R. L., & Moldoveanu, M. C. (2003). Capital Versus Talent: The Battle That’s Reshaping Business. HARVARD BUSINESS REVIEW, (7). 36.

[10] John Alan, C. (2002). “I Didn’t Know” and “I Was Only Doing My Job”: Has Corporate Governance Careened out of Control? A Case Study of Enron’s Information Myopia. Journal Of Business Ethics, (3), 275.

[11] Marinovic, I., & Povel, P. (2017). Competition for talent under performance manipulation. Journal Of Accounting And Economics, 641-14. doi:10.1016/j.jacceco.2017.04.003

[12] Mayer-Haug, K., Read, S., Brinckmann, J., Dew, N., & Grichnik, D. (2013). Entrepreneurial talent and venture performance: A meta-analytic investigation of SMEs. Research Policy, 421251-1273. doi:10.1016/j.respol.2013.03.001

Operationalization of the Concept of Talent Management (TM)

mathias-sager-talent-management.jpg

Summary. Talent can be framed as either something that people possess (object approach) or something that people are (subject approach). Human capital may come from the historical meaning of a ‘talent’ in Latin and Greek of measuring the weight of a significant amount of gold or silver. Talent in the form of intrinsic learning motivation only realizes when sufficient encouragement and support exists. Inclusiveness is a feature of strength-based TM and related to egalitarian investments into the potential of all employees. Also, to foster the empowerment of all, a more holistic definition of talent that is complementary to ability measures and functions as a complex interactive process between innate and developed abilities, interests and motivations should be advised.

Object and subject approach to talent

There is a lack of a general definition of talent in the world of work [1], a term that seems to describe a phenomenon understood differently by academia and management consulting [2]. Although a lot of talent management (TM) research bases on anecdotes, literature review reveals some insight into how the meaning of talent emerged over time and what the difficulties in a clear conceptualization and operationalization are [3]. Gallardo-Gallard et al. (2013) contributed significantly to the clarification of the approaches to talent by framing talent as either something that people possess (object approach) or something that people are (subject approach).

Human capital (literally)

Historically, a talent in Latin and Greek was a measure of weight for a significant amount of gold and silver. This background might explain why the earlier approach to TM assumes an object approach [3] in which talent is popularized as an innate characteristic that one possesses or not [4]. It may also explain why ‘human capital’ is used synonymously with ‘talent’ [5].

Talent as a learning capacity determined by context

Unlike the fixed influence of genes on body size [6], elite achievement is rather the result of differences in experiences, training [4], (elite) education, and networks [7]. Nowadays, economic and social innovation needs drive the demand for talents. While talent itself may still be considered a non-learnable capacity [8], excellence and mastery can be achieved quite independently from such a notion of talent given the availability of suitable learning strategies and accessible knowledge [6]. Similarly, talent in the form of intrinsic learning motivation only realizes when sufficient encouragement and support exists [6]. This is consistent with the AMO (ability-motivation-opportunity) framework that stresses the importance of opportunities [3].

Inclusive subject approach to talent

Talent seen as people rather than attributes [5] comprises the inclusive subject approach, which includes all personnel of an organization in its scope and values different employee groups as contributors to the company [9]. Inclusiveness is a feature of strength-based TM and related to egalitarian investments into the potential of all employees. Critics of the inclusive subject approach refer to the increasing overlap of TM with strategic human resource management (SHRM). TM tends to be defined as more exclusive than SHRM by targeting top talents, and it legitimates the concentration of rewards to so-called A players through their high potential [3]. However, subjective appraisals favoring certain individual performances over the interests of customers and shareholders have presented another challenge to this approach of TM [10].

A more holistic definition of talent

Talent differs according to the field of application and the combination of cognitive resources. The traditional IQ measure does not say a lot about talent, why more complex profiles blending analytical, practical, and creative talent are suggested [11]. While academia focuses on theoretical descriptors of talent, the broader society is interested in the practical function of talent [12]. A definition of talent complementary to ability measures as a complex interactive process between innate and developed abilities, interests and motivations would provide for a more holistic concept of talent that meets different needs and allows the empowerment all [13].

References

[1] Tansley, C. (2011). What do we mean by the term “talent” in talent management?. Industrial & Commercial Training, 43(5), 266. doi:10.1108/00197851111145853

[2] Dries, N. (2013). The psychology of talent management: A review and research agenda. Human Resource Management Review, 23272-285. doi:10.1016/j.hrmr.2013.05.001

[3] Gallardo-Gallard, E., Dries, N., & Cruz, T. (2013). What is the meaning of talent in the world of work? Human Resource Management Review, 23(4), 290-300.

[4] Irvine, S. H. (1998). Innate talents: A psychological tautology?. BEHAVIORAL AND BRAIN SCIENCES, (3). 419.

[5] Adamsen, B. (2016). Demystifying talent management. [electronic book] : a critical approach to the realities of talent. Houndmills, Basingstoke Hampshire ;: Palgrave Macmillan, 2016.

[6] Ericsson, K. A., Roring, R. W., & Nandagopal, K. (2007). Giftedness and Evidence for Reproducibly Superior Performance: An Account Based on the Expert Performance Framework. High Ability Studies, 18(1), 3-56.

[7] Wai, J., & Rindermann, H. (2017). What goes into high educational and occupational achievement? Education, brains, hard work, networks, and other factors. High Ability Studies, 28(1), 127-145.

[8] The few, the proud and the brave: Finding, hiring and managing gifted employees in a time of talent wars. (2017).

[9] Stahl, G., Björkman, I., Farndale, E., Morris, S., Paauwe, J., & Stiles, P. (2012). Six principles of effective global talent management. MIT Sloan Management Review, 53(2), 25-32.

[10] Scullion, H., & Collings, D. G. (Eds.). (2011). Global talent management. Abington, UK: Routledge.

[11] Ferrando, M., Ferrándiz, C., Llor, L., & Sainz, M. (2016). Successful intelligence and giftedness: an empirical study. Anales De Psicología, 32(3), 672-682. doi:10.6018/analesps.32.3.259431

[12] Who decides what giftedness is?: On the dilemma of researching and educating the gifted mind in the light of culture, political ambition, and scientific dogma. (2013).

[13] Nijs, S., Gallardo-Gallardo, E., Dries, N., & Sels, L. (2014). A Multidisciplinary Review into the Definition, Operationalization, and Measurement of Talent. Journal Of World Business, 49(2), 180-191. doi:http://dx.doi.org.liverpool.idm.oclc.org/10.1016/j.jwb.2013.11.002