Talent Edge Weekly - Issue # 171

Performance management, succession planning, internal talent marketplace, workforce ecosystems and AI, and leadership development.

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Welcome to this week’s issue of Talent Edge Weeklybringing together insights about work, the workplace, and the workforce. Read by human resources practitioners, business leaders, and others interested in the world of work.

A special shout-out to Philip Zoller, VP of Talent Management, GuideWell/Florida Blue — for referring new subscribers to Talent Edge Weekly. Thank you, Philip, for your support of this newsletter!

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Have a great week, and I look forward to sharing more ideas in next week’s Edge!


Brian Heger is an internal human resources practitioner with a Fortune 150 organization and has responsibilities for Strategic Talent and Workforce Planning. You can connect with Brian on Linkedin, Twitter, and brianheger.com


Below is a glance at the content of this week's issue. My detailed summaries of these resources are in the section after this one.

And don't forget to check out the 2023 Job Cuts and Layoff Tracker.


As organizations use performance management (PM) as one enabler of business performance and stakeholder value, this one-page reference provides five resources to help answer questions related to PM. The five questions include:1) What PM practices do organizations use (and don’t use) today? 2) How can employee well-being be integrated into PM? 3) What are the triggers for when employee goals might be adjusted? 4) How can we mitigate bias in PM? 5) How can we use PM to enable collaboration across business units and cross-functional silos? The reference includes links to the five source documents from Gartner, Deloitte Insights, Harvard Business Review, and The Talent Strategy Group. I also provide a few points made in each resource. For example, The Talent Strategy Group’s 2023 report on the PM practices of over 300 organizations shows that 90% use performance ratings, nearly 50% ask employees to assign themselves a rating, and 17% enforce a rating distribution. Regarding integrating well-being and PM, Gartner mentions how performance feedback discussions can incorporate three types of well-being conversations, including disruption-focused conversations, which address how employees are coping with disruptions that can affect performance (e.g., change in responsibilities, loss of key team members, etc.). Before digging into these five resources, start with the foundational questions: what is the purpose and objectives of our company's PM? What is our PM trying to solve? From there, determine the PM practices that enable those goals and outcomes.

Succession planning is a top priority for many organizations. Still, we are often reminded how many executives fall short of performance expectations within 12-18 months of taking on a new role. As organizations look to build their succession pipeline faster and more effectively, this i4cp article shares six ways its member organizations are shifting their succession practices. These changes range from 1) shifting from 1:1 succession plans to talent pools to 2) moving away from using years (e.g., 1, 2, 3 years) to determine successor readiness, to name a few. Regarding “years” as a measure of successor readiness, I believe that one reason this measure has fallen short is that it is a general and often arbitrary measure that might not fully take into account what skills the successor needs to develop, the development tactics that will be used, and the time it will take to implement development plans. To help overcome this challenge, one option is to categorize successor readiness in terms of the “number of development moves away.” This approach emphasizes the critical experiences/development needed to speed up a successor’s readiness for the target opportunity and forces decision-makers to think more critically about the development that needs to take place. And with advances in talent intelligence technology, decision-makers can leverage these platforms to inform succession planning. Do you need to alter how you determine successor readiness? How will you be changing your succession practices in 2023 and beyond?

Internal mobility is a critical component of a talent strategy. And according to an Extraordinary Women on Boards and i4cp survey, corporate boards of directors are increasingly interested in understanding the internal mobility rate of their organizations. The survey found that internal mobility rate — the degree to which employees move throughout an organization (lateral moves, promotions, transfers, etc.)— ranked number two of the top 10 talent and workforce data sources that boards want to receive but that are not shared with them. As organizations strengthen their internal mobility practices, many are turning to the internal talent marketplace (ITM)—usually, an AI-enabled platform that helps match employees (and their skills) to opportunities in their organization. This new HBR article provides ideas for implementing an ITM and covers topics such as determining what ITM data to leverage and how to incentivize participation. I believe one of the most overlooked success factors of an ITM are the non-tech components. Far too often, firms approach an ITM as a technology initiative and lose sight of the non-technological barriers that detract from ITM (e.g., policies that restrict internal movement (e.g., the employee must be in a role for a certain amount of time before moving to another internal role or opportunity), talent hoarding—where managers intentionally or subconsciously attempt to retain their best employees to the detriment of the employee’s personal development and what's best for the company). With this as the backdrop, I am resharing this one-page reference I created that includes 6 non-technological barriers to internal mobility. There are other barriers, but this list of 6 will get you started.

As the number of contingent workers (e.g., contractors, freelancers, professional services workers, etc.) continues to expand in many organizations, HR leaders play a critical role in helping their firms manage and coordinate their workforce as an ecosystem of both external contributors and internal employees. This challenge is magnified given the impact of artificial intelligence (AI) on how work gets delivered and by whom. This new and in-depth report explores the intersection of workforce ecosystems and AI and the implications for 1) Designing Work, 2) Supplying Workers, 3) Conducting Work, and 4) Measuring Work and Workers. While there are too many insights to summarize from this report, one point made in the “design work” section is how advancements in AI and the growth of the contingent workforce provide opportunities for firms to critically evaluate how they organize work beyond jobs—a topic discussed heavily by John Boudreau and Ravin Jesuthasan in their book Work Without Jobs: How to Reboot Your Organization’s Work Operating System (March 29, 2022). This tactic involves disaggregating existing jobs into tasks and determining how those tasks can be best delivered through various aspects of a workforce ecosystem, including internal employees, external contributors, and AI. Since this practice is new for many organizations, I am resharing this bonus article by Gartner that provides ideas for assessing a role’s “composability”—the degree to which it can be broken down into tasks.

Identifying, developing, and retaining future leaders is a perennial priority for many organizations. To help gauge how firms are progressing toward this goal, this 25-page report is part of the longest-running global study of leadership to understand current and future leadership practices. Topics range from how well firms develop their leadership benches, skills that leaders need for the future, and the retention of high-potential leaders. Regarding retention, page 23 mentions how three years seems to be the critical tipping point for high-potential leaders to start showing an interest in moving on: for high-potential employees within the first three years of their tenure, only 12% said they intend to leave their companies within the year. By contrast, high-potential employees who have been with the company for three years or longer are 25% more likely to be at risk of departure. Of those high-potentials who plan to depart within one year, lack of career growth opportunities and leaders lacking effective interpersonal skills are among the top reasons for their intention to leave. These data points reinforce the importance of continuously assessing the retention risk of high-potential employees and successors and developing retention strategies to mitigate risk. Page 8 touches on the importance of spotting leadership potential earlier and more broadly (cast a wider net). For research-based ideas on improving an organization’s ability to identify those with a leadership pipeline more accurately, you can check out Allan Church’s article, A Manager’s Mini Guide to Identifying and Assessing Leadership Potential.


A one-page editable template that helps practitioners think through and determine which mix of 11 talent tactics will comprise their organizations' talent strategy. You can also view this post on LinkedIn and share it with your network!


As part of CHROs on the Go a digital platform subscription that provides the easiest, fastest, and most convenient way to stay informed about hires, promotions, and resignations in the Chief Human Resources Officer role21 new CHRO announcements were posted on the platform last week.

This week’s CHRO highlight is:

  • PepsiCo, Inc. (PURCHASE, N.Y. ) [NASDAQ: PEP] announced that Ronald Schellekens, EVP and Chief Human Resources Officer, will retire at the end of this year. The company has named Becky Schmitt the new EVP and Chief Human Resources Officer. She will report to PepsiCo's Chairman and CEO Ramon Laguarta and assume full accountabilities, effective October 1st. Ms. Schmitt is joining PepsiCo from Cognizant, where she has been the EVP, Chief People Officer since February 2020.

Do you want to join hundreds of others getting the EDGE each week in knowing which CHROs are being hired, promoted, and resigning? If so:

Currently, there are +2000 CHROs announcements on CHROs on the Go, with an average of 25 new announcements added each week!

If you are already a member of CHROs on the Go, you can log in to access all announcements and site functionality.

Click the link or table below to see the latest updates from a segment of organizations that have announced job cuts since the start of 2023.

Recruiters, search firms, and hiring managers can use this resource to identify opportunities for recruiting talent from organizations affected by layoffs. A few firms that announced job cuts this past week include Biogen and Medtronic 



Highlights a previously shared Talent Edge Weekly resource that received many views and engagement!

Includes 100 questions spanning 9 categories to help practitioners think critically about their workforce and talent strategies. Categories range from recruiting, onboarding, employee experience, and diversity, equity, and inclusion.

If so, you can check out issue #169, which includes 16 of the most popular resources from March. Topics include HR effectiveness, performance management, recruiting, skills, employee wellbeing, contingent workforce, and more!


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brianheger.com provides free access to +1,000 curated articles, research reports, podcasts, etc. that help practitioners drive better business results through strategic human resources and talent management.

CHROS on the Go is a subscription that provides the easiest and most convenient way to stay informed about Chief Human Resources Officer hires, promotions, and resignations in organizations of all sizes and industries.

Talent Edge Weekly is a free weekly newsletter that brings together the best talent and strategic human resources insights from various sources. It is published every Sunday at 6PM EST.