Author: Garrick Throckmorton– Chief Product and Services Officer
Human Resources professionals across the world have been using competencies, and competency models for decades as a way in which to break down jobs into a group of characteristics that are needed to help achieve desired results. As the competency movement picked up momentum, organizations gained access to language that allowed for an infusion of psychology into their talent strategies. This movement was incredibly valuable, helpful, and moved HR organizations forward in their desire to be strategic minded.
At the same time, the frequency that HR professionals had to answer the following question from employees increased daily and has never slowed down, “What in the world is a competency!?!” Professional societies have tackled the question and over time produced various answers. Today, a quick google search of that question will result in a mere 226,000,000 results! As we connect with practitioners around the world, one thing is certain. Competency fatigue has set in. Practitioners can simultaneously acknowledge the value that competencies provide, yet are fatigued by their complexity, theoretical framing, and the constant need to educate others on the topic.
If you fall into this category, it is important to know you now have a better option: Roles and Practices.One of TalentTelligent’s clear differentiators is that we are moving beyond competencies and into a new world that speaks in clear terms, rooted in observable behaviors. Ultimately, our desire is to create talent tools for employees as our primary audience. As we all know, if employees do not engage deeply in the use of talent tools, our functional ability to understand and explain the tools does not matter much at all.
How have we extended the valuable work of the competency movement into a new language, and a new structure that allows for clearer execution? Through the use of Roles and Practices.
A Role is the work that must be fulfilled no matter the organization type or size and that against which you hire, promote, pay, and separate employees. For example, if you reviewed 1,000 job descriptions of Leaders (not that I would wish that task on you!), you would quickly determine that having Vision would be animportant role a Leader must fulfill. We have used research to define the Roles needed for Individuals Contributors, Managers/Supervisors, and Leaders to succeed.
Following this example, to be successful fulfilling the Role of Vision, a Leader needs to demonstrate a variety of behaviors. These measurable and observable behaviors take the form of Practices in the KSA Suite and include the Knowledge, Skills and Attributes that employees need to bring with them work and perform well in vital Roles.