The war for talent is not over. It’s just started.
Talents are hard to get and even harder to keep.
I wrote about ciclicity and pipelines. Each team has a certain development cycles. And each team member has its own development cycle. If these cycles are overlapped, than everyone is happy and the team is strong. Each individual has a different development cycle.
My theory is that we have x types of development cycles
1. High potential – they have very short development cycles (2-3 years), they need to change jobs to fulfill their potential,
Put them where there are the most challenging tasks and keep always with a potential lateral move available, in order to give room for a promotion.
You cannot keep them more than one development cycle in your team, unless you have several senior positions.
2. Good potential – first one or two levels are usually quickly passed. When they are quite young, you cannot discriminate quite good between a high potential and a good potential.
Usually, they are the stars in your team. Don’t lie to your self, I haven’t seen many high potentials in one place. Put all the trust in them and support them in their development. Should be fine to keep them in two or three development cycles. For this ones, the progress in the career is essential, so they feel part of the success.
3. The Reliable- my best friend. The guys I usually like at interviews. I highly appreciate the first two categories, but even more these ones. I could compare them with middle class. Sweden has an excellent middle class, therefore their standard of life is high.
To form a great team, look for good reliable engineers. They invent as long as it is needed. They remain in the team for 3-4 development cycles. Here you find most of the experts, most of the nice team members.
4. Kick the guy – my enemy. You don’t need them. For some strange reasons, you might even hired them. Or your predecessor. The main thing with this kind of people is that they don’t realize what they are good at. And insist to be promoted, even they don’t do much in their role.
You can keep them forever. And ever. And 3-4 years after you are tired to keep them.
So keep in mind a few simple questions when thinking about the talents in your team
Can you keep him more than one development cycle?
How many levels you can ensure in the team under your responsibility?
Do you search for a new position for him or you let him freely choose?