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Author's profile photo Gabriela Burlacu

Tales from the Frontiers of Talent Management Science: Part 2 of 4– Superstars and team performance, Older employees and learning

Members of the Cloud Customer Insights & Alignment team attended the Society for Industrial/Organizational Psychologists (SIOP) annual conference in May. This conference brings together top researchers and practitioners from all over the world to share cutting-edge findings and best practices in the world of talent management. This blog series provides a quick summary of some of the interesting things we learned.

Superstars and Team Performance

Investing heavily in core team members may not necessarily result in better team performance. Core team members, or employees most central to the problems, tasks, and overall workflow of the team, tend to be the most highly compensated by organizations. A study looking at team performance among NBA basketball teams across 11 years found that investing more heavily in core team members did not drive team performance, suggesting that this is not a good way to boost performance in teams that have highly interrelated and interdependent tasks. Lesson learned: when a team’s success depends on its members working closely together to achieve a goal, all team members should be regarded as core members. (based on: “Revisiting Strategic Core Theory of Teams: Implications of Greater Interdependence”, a poster submitted by Doctoral Candidate B. Ellen Parker, Florida State University)

Old Dogs do want to Learn New Tricks

Employees don’t lose the motivation to develop in their jobs as they get older. Organizations may hesitate to invest in training older adults since the perception is that older adults are less motivated to learn and develop than their younger counterparts. Recent research reveals that motivation to develop actually does not decline with age. A series of studies showed that when employer support was high and employees had confidence they could complete the training tasks, age had no impact on motivation to learn. These findings suggest that companies can ensure employees of all ages stay engaged in training and development– a critical finding as employers seek to drive high performance cultures in a changing demographic world of work. (based on: “Training Older Workers: Fresh Insights and Future Directions”, a symposium submitted by Doctoral Candidate Tracy McCausland, George Mason University)

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