We hire hundreds of associates per year.
Culture Index helps us identify top talent, and it helps us put the right people in the right seats.
Our management team and our bench are stronger now than before
we implemented this tool.
- Dave E.
Talent - A person with special abilities,
possessing a capacity for achievement and success.
The key to talent management is understanding the individual motivations, drives, and aptitudes of the person with the talent. Too many times management makes a huge mistake in assuming that since they are talented and have been promoted to a management position that the person they manage is motivated and driven by the same as they. More times than not this is absolutely wrong. Culture Index provides an assessment benchmarking talent and identifies the individual differences in people, thus making it very easy for the manager to manage and motivate to the individual instead of to themselves. Individual personalities are motivated by a great number of criteria, whether you follow Maslow's Theory of Hierarchy or someone else's it helps explain individual differences in motivation and how to manage to those differences.
Talent Management is easily understood after attending one of Culture Index's Executive Workshops, which takes the Executive or Manager through the gamut of motivations and behaviors that employees possess as well as provides them with an outline on how to best produce the most amount of productivity from them.
An effective Talent Management Strategy is aligning people with corporate and business unit goals, requires the manager of that entity to get inside the mind of the talent, understanding, knowing, and then producing an environment for proper motivation. The Culture Index Program will instill in the Executives and Managers in attendance of the Workshop the knowledge for them to understand individual human motivations and how to maximize them in each individual in their business unit.
Managing talent is actually a very simple process. Once you have the right person in the right job, management actually becomes a very easy process.
On going talent management is a daily exercise forcing the manager to think into the mentality of the talent working and reporting to them.
There are a number of basic criteria that outline an effective talent management strategy.
The first is make sure they have all the tools and resources at their disposal to be able to effectively perform the work assigned.
Communication is the second most important criteria. Make sure they understand clearly the scope of their responsibilities as well as provide them feedback as to how well they are performing them.
Talent management requires less time than most managers would ever know. Those who possess talent are the ones who are getting the work done, they simply need to know that you respect them for the work skills they demonstrate and that you will assist them in any situation, when needed to effectively perform their required job responsibilities.
One of the greatest deficiencies of the talent management process is that organizations and managers fail to address the critical question, What should we as a company be doing to develop the candidate for this position?
Rarely are candidates perfect round pegs fitting in to perfect round hole jobs.
List the apparent weaknesses and your concerns and opposite each write down what corrective or developmental steps will be taken. Be realistic as you go over the list, making sure you are asking yourself if you have the time, energy, resources, motivations, and track record to make the plan work. Are the developmental solutions reasonable, feasible, are they appropriate and is the ROI adequate.
If you hire the candidate, carry out the plan. Discuss the plan openly with the employee and make the plan a top priority because that can; make the difference between marginal and top performance; can turn a marginal employee in to a top performer and; help retain talent that is expensive and difficult to replace.
How does an organization go about talent recruitment? First, their must be an objective process in which you can actually identify what talent your organization is seeking. Too many times Executives are too busy running the business, so they do not take the time to sit back and look at the bigger picture in the fact that if they hire the right talent, the rest of their management responsibilities just became very easy. Secondly, hiring is very often an emotional process, based upon a few interviews and a gut check to affirm that the hiring manager likes the person and perceives they will fit well on the team. These are two huge mistakes.
The Culture Index Program comes bundled with a position assessment, allowing Executives, Hiring Managers, and all other persons contiguous with the position to be able to objectively measure what work skills they individually want from the position to be filled. This assessment becomes the key ingredient in the talent recruitment strategy, as it provides a baseline of style, demeanor, character, drive, impetus, and energy from each decision maker as to the type of talent, which is needed for that specific position. Talented accountants and engineers would not be considered to be talented salespeople, as the skills and personality required are quite opposite for the respective positions.
Executives should also hold the bar high on the hiring managers as it is on human nature to hire someone who is not as talented as you. As the old saying goes 9's hire 7's and 7's hire 5's and so it goes on down the line. No one wants to wake up each morning going to work, thinking the talented employee they just hired is going to take their job away from them in the next few months. This very fact is why the Leaders of their companies need to maintain an alertness on the talent recruitment strategy from the basic identification of talent to ensuring that "Talent" is actually being hired.
Before a company or hiring manager begins to recruit talent, one must first define what talent and where does it come from. The Oxford dictionary defines Talent as "natural aptitude or skill". Natural is also defined by Oxford as "existing in or derived from nature". Aptitude by Oxford is "a natural ability or inclination". Skill is defined as "the ability to do something well".
We need to diverse for a moment and then discuss what some companies believe in with their whole heart and soul and that is to "Hire Style and Train the Skills".
Where does a person's style come from? It comes from within the individual, from their personality, which again defined by Oxford's dictionary as "characteristics or qualities that form an individual's character".
Take note of the following quote of William James, a Psychological Theorist in 1890:
"Habit is thus the enormous fly-wheel of society, its most precious conservative agent. . . . Already at the age of twenty-five you see the professional mannerism settling down on the young commercial traveller, on the young doctor, on the young minister, on the young counselor-at-law. You see the little lines of cleavage running through the character, the tricks of thought, the prejudices, the ways of the 'shop,' in a word, from which the man can by-and-by no more escape than his coat-sleeve can suddenly fall into a new set of folds. On the whole, it is best he should not escape. It is well for the world that in most of us, by the age of thirty, the character has set like plaster, and will never soften again."
Our style defines us and demonstrates itself as how others see and perceive us. It is our "inner persona" comprised of a system of traits and behaviors. Traits, defined early in childhood as well as genetically, are part of the individual for the rest of their life while behaviors are manifestations of underlying personality traits. We make visible our personality through these behaviors depending upon the environmental situation.
The importance of all of this is at a very early age we have already developed our personality or style, yet we may not have the skill sets for the job. So which of the two style or skills should one prioritize in the recruitment process? The one that does not change, your personality. We can train people in skill sets, but you can not change their personality.
Culture Index can provide great insight into assessing an individual's personality or style thus allowing decision makers a fantastic opportunity in hiring and predicting the individuals performance.
This is where talent recruitment should begin, in identifying the style of the candidate necessary for the position in question. Secondly, is move on to the skill sets required for effective performance and assess those, all the while maintaining a focus on the style of the person as that is also how they will apply the skill sets that have taught to them.
Most personality researchers have theorized that there are five traits that make up the individual, calling it the "Big Five". It is a model that Culture Index used in its construction of work related traits.
These traits when possessed by the individual as well as required by the position is ultimately what defines true talent.
The Culture Index Program provides both a position assessment as well as a candidate assessment providing the decision maker with a powerful diagnostic statistical analysis of the effective fit for the position and the type of talent required for effective performance.
Before anyone can effectively develop a talent recruitment strategy to recruit for a position, they must know the job requirements? What kinds of defined, comprehensive job criteria do you currently have in place? This does not mean just pulling the job description from a HR file cabinet.
The first step in understanding the job is to determine what activities the new hire will be doing on a regular basis. This is done effectively by listing out the activities expected and then assigning a time estimate for each activity.
The second step is to categorize those activities. This step starts people thinking about the behavioral skills that will be necessary.
Step three is to identify the qualifications both education and professional breaking them down in to two areas, necessities and desirables. Necessities are essential to job performance, desirables would further enhance performance.
The fourth step in the process is to identify all of the work environmental factors, such as extended work week-overtime, travel, opportunity for promotion.
Step five is the identify the key behaviors and behavioral abilities by having a group of people close to the job complete the Culture Index, C-Job. By using the C-Job you can identify the behavioral style which will be necessary to perform the activities, the most important abilities to look for in candidates, and the motivational needs which candidates should possess if they are to be successful and productive in the job.
C-Job, the job analysis provided on an unlimited basis, via the Culture Index Program is only as good as the input from the people who complete it. Experience clearly has proven that the more people involved in this position analysis, then a more comprehensive, accurate, and objective picture of the absolute behavioral needs of the job.
The sixth and final step in the talent recruitment strategy is bringing all of the previous steps together and fine tuning the requirements. At this stage you will need to determine the key performance criteria so you can address them in the interviewing process, preparing the necessary questions which will reveal the necessary information about behaviors and qualifications, including skills and knowledge.
The CI Survey is a personality inventory developed to objectively measure a job candidate's traits and perceptions of how to behave in a current work situation. The scoring produces a graph of the individual's traits and job behavioral perceptions, which can be effectively interpreted by those individuals who have attended the Culture Index Management Workshop.
The results from the survey are not a pass-fail type; rather they should be compared to the graph generated by the C-Job. The matching of the two requires skill which will improve with experience and can be enhanced by the facilitation of a Culture Index Licensee. The trained CI Analyst will be able to interpret the CI Survey results, effectively describing the traits and job behaviors of the candidates. Also predicting job strengths and weaknesses, as well as identify developmental priorities relative to behavioral skills and abilities.
One should consider personality traits in all jobs. Studies have continually proven that properly used, valid assessments have a higher predictive validity than interviews. Many times assessments, when properly applied, also assist in determining who to reject for certain positions.
Guidelines for proper usage of the Culture Index Program are provided through the highly trained and experienced Licensees of the Culture Index Program, which include but are not limited to:
What questions should I be asking about the CI Survey results of a candidate?
How close a fit is their style to the job requirements? Make sure they are very close to a proper fit by using the C-Job, Culture Index's position analysis, as the further away they are from matching up their Culture Index assessment and the C-Job the more likely their performance will not need be what you wanted from the position.
What are the most apparent strengths in comparing the candidate to the job?
What are the most apparent weaknesses?
If this person were hired, what further development needs would have the highest priorities?
Are there any other specific issues or concerns that should be addressed in a subsequent interview?
Are there any areas that I should consider probing into when I perform reference checks?
Draw inferences - which lead to conclusions not justified by the facts
First impressions - sticking to judgements made in the first few minutes of the interview
Halo Effect - allowing one characteristic or observation to influence your decision
Verbal Skill - falling into the assumption that polished verbal skills means more than just what it is; for example sales ability or the ability to speak to large groups
Stereo Typing - assigning some class, cultural, sex, or group stereotype to a candidate
Behavior based questions are intended to assist the interviewer in understanding how a person has actually handled a certain situation, activity, or responsibility. The underlying belief is that past behavior is a great predictor of future behavior. Four to seven behavior based questions should be directed towards the most important job activities.
Following are some examples of behavior based questions:
The key to using questions like these is knowing what you are looking for. What are the appropriate behaviors and actions in each situation? It is very important to identify the behaviors in advance, and again experience shows that a group session can be very productive at developing the questions and some rating of the responses.
For predicting future job performance it is imperative that you attempt to observe or identify a candidate's behavior in a realistic job situation. In the interview process use analogies; this interviewing method allows you an opportunity to actually see performance prior to making a hiring decision.
The first step is to complete a C-Job position analysis to determine the most frequent and important behavioral skills which are critical for the position. The second step is to select a few activities and develop structured exercises based upon realistic job situations.
Writing simulation exercises is a professional job because it involves linking up specific behavioral skills such as decisiveness, leadership, organizing and planning, etc with the exercises. Both appropriate and inappropriate behaviors for the various skills need to be defined, and an interviewer's rating guide need to be constructed. Once the materials are all prepared, then the interviewers must be trained to use the exercises and rating systems.
At Culture Index we have seen statistical and anecdotal evidence to confirm that when used effectively, simulation exercises are a powerful contributor to a talent selection process that very accurately weeds out candidates unlikely to succeed and identifies developmental needs of those candidates who do have an acceptable level of potential.
Too many people today, believe that reference checking is a meaningless process. If not performed effectively is certainly is, but performed by a skilled person there is a great deal of information that can be revealed.
Reference checking is a legal, appropriate, and desirable step in an effective hiring process. Feedback from previous employers can prove invaluable in understanding how a candidate will perform in your organization.
Who does the reference checking? The hiring manager, not HR personnel. Managers and decision makers of other companies will be more open and honest with your company management, especially with more technical and specialized positions as the managers of those areas will know more appropriate questions to ask and their reference checking will therefore be more revealing.
With whom should you check references? Apart from the names on the resumes or application you should ask for additional references. A smart idea is to ask your candidate to contact his or her references, asking them to contact the hiring manager directly or decision maker.
The fastest method of reference checking is via telephone. It is preferable to leave a message and leave it up to the other party to return the call and give them time to verify who you are. Try to elicit cooperation from the other party, calls from out of the blue are uncomfortable for most people. Also many companies restrict what managers can or cannot say. Another little trick is to ask for the return call and if they do not return the call, there is probably something that they would like to share with you but were not allowed to because of HR policy. If you also state that you are looking forward to hiring this talented person and would appreciate a return call to confirm that they were an excellent employee, many times this tactic will open the door for more informal and revealing communications.
What should you be asking? The fundamental purpose of reference checking is to verify factual information. Beyond the basics of employment dates, salary, etc, the process should also include questions about how the person handled their responsibilities, related to coworkers and customers, how the person performed, and why they left.
The key to an effective talent retention strategy is for the manager to be able to relate, understand, comprehend, and acknowledge talent for what it is. To properly retain talent, the effective manager must create an environment for the talent to be properly motivated. In order to do so, the manager must know the individual's unique motivations and also understand basic motivational theory.
Companies too many times waste capital and energy on trying to create a powerful corporate image, but do not have the management talent to support such an endeavor. Human talent is the optimal key to having a successful, well run organization. Educated management to then manage and retain that talent is also necessary. Through the Culture Index Workshop, we provide talent retention strategies that educate Executives and Management on how to most effectively design, build, develop, and retain talent.
It is actually quite simple since talented employees do not leave companies, they leave their managers. In order to have high Talent Retention, the corporate focus should be on how well it's management has been educated in the identification, hiring, development, and retention of talent not focused on the individual. When talent retention becomes a problem, one should not ask what is the problem, one should ask, who is the problem.
One of the most common turnover criteria is a mis-matching of a new hire's expectations and the reality of the job. Identifying all of those barriers in advance will assist in your retention strategies.
Talent retention lies in the hands of the manager of the person. People do not leave companies, they leave management.
To effectively retain talent one must understand that individual's motivating needs and drives, and then take those in put them in to a short term and long term plan.
Culture Index's Survey will provide to the line manager information which will effectively assist them in understanding the candidates motivating needs and drives, therefore allowing the manager to develop an effective management plan for the candidate as well as long term goals for long term retention.
In a 1999 Hay Group Study they found the following the most common reasons, why employees want to stay with a company:
In his book "The Coming Jobs War" by Jim Clifton, the Chairman of Gallup explains it very nicely that one must consider the multitude of reasons why employees leave, but consider these for a moment:
Who can affect these? My boss or direct supervisor is the primary influence on all of the above criteria.
How much emphasis does your company place upon the training and development of your supervisors and mid level managers? There is a direct correlation to their lack of development and training to your turnover costs.
It is actually quite simple, management must get employees engaged. Without engagement and participation employees sooner or later will leave.
Talent retention therefore rests on the shoulders of the leadership of the organization, making sure that time, energy, effort, training, and development of the company's talent is a major focus of the entire management team.
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Gary Walstrom, CEO and Founder of Culture Index, Inc. has a staff of approximately 20 people with offices nationwide. Mr. Walstrom has over 30 years of experience in hiring, selection and management consulting in assessment techniques. The Culture Index Program was developed by Mr. Walstrom, the copyright holder, with the assistance of Dr. Louis Janda, Ph. D, a clinical psychologist.
Dr. Janda has worked with companies to perform psychological assessments of potential employees and employees under consideration for promotion. He has published extensively, including more than 30 articles in professional journals, eight college textbooks, and nine books intended for the general public. He has also written five books for the general public dealing with psychological tests. Psychological Testing: Theory and Applications by Dr. Louis Janda, Ph D. is a textbook that has been used at numerous universities throughout the country.
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With our internet-based talent management software, you will be able to utilize the skills and knowledge you've learned through our coaching and training programs. Upon registration, all clients are given log-in information to access their own account. From there, you will be able to send invitations, store and organize survey information, print detailed reports and much more. "CIIMS" is able to accommodate for complex, management hierarchy structures - allowing for executive, managerial or HR permissions in viewing and supervision of company records. Our talent management software is always growing and improving. Comments and suggestions are welcome and will be considered in any future update. We also provide full technical software support to all of our clients.
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When properly understood the Culture Index (CI) Program influences decisions as critically important as the growth and productivity of your entire organization and the career development of your people. The CI Program's Officers and Licensees share in a strong sense of responsibility for its sound, constructive use, therefore our utilization services are an essential piece of the total CI program and why you're CI Consultant will contact you periodically. When they contact you, it is for the purpose of enabling you and your organization in benefiting from their extensive experience with the CI Program, and the broad range of tangible, intangible, and advisory services which they can provide.
Since we are macro organizational consultants listing all of our services would be difficult but below are a number of them:
We encourage you to call on your CI Consultant for these services. In addition, the staff of Culture Index Inc., based in Kansas City, Missouri work in conjunction with your consultant, and is also always available for consultative and technical support.
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Culture Index was created out of a desire to bring an up-to-date personality assessment tool onto the market.
The Culture Index Survey attained outstanding ratings as recently as June of 2004.
While other products on the market were satisfied with .75 or less as an accuracy score for word meanings, CI's scores are no lower than .82 and as high as .94.
We're rightfully proud of our instrument, but we're not sitting on our laurels. CI also launched four new products onto the market.
C-JOB is our Job Assessment tool. It is used to examine the needs of the job and custom-fit those requirements to a specific personality type.
C-FILTER is our online tool for sorting applicants. It allows you to select what pre-interview questions to ask candidates and will filter based on your desired answers.
You've asked for it in the past and now we have C-IQ. It's an intelligence assessment survey and one more tool in our arsenal for improving your bottom line. C-IQ was developed by Dr. Louis Janda, co-creator of the Culture Index survey and one of the nation's leading psychomatricians.
Most importantly, we bring over 75 Years of combined knowledge of Assessment tools in the form of our consultants.
How often have you taken an outstanding inside sales person and promoted them to outside sales only to find them failing within a month's time? It happens much too often.
In many companies, employees may start in customer service, tech support or in inventory and warehousing and be promoted through the ranks. The employer eventually discovers the employee is unhappy, unproductive and unemployed. Hit and miss hiring and promotion is costly when the employee is pulling in a five or six digit salary, bonus, etc. and hasn't made a sale in months.
This happens because the employer assumes anyone who knows the product can sell it and that's not true. A field sales person doesn't need to be a product expert. Sales are made by meeting with the right person and knowing how to get them to buy - with or without the details. This forceful sales style is found in four Culture Index Profiles we'll collectively call ... the Trailblazer, the Daredevil, the Persuader, and the Rainmaker.
Fearless, persuasive, and focused on finding a buyer for their product or service, these people have no problem with hunting down their target market and bringing it to a decision on a product or service. That closure, consequent commission and earned high salary is what matters to the Hunters. They do not want to be bothered with the paperwork of how many arrows were shot and how many found targets. When contracts are signed, and your new client is hopefully purchasing a host of new product, the hunt is finished and the Buffalo Hunter's job is done. Now it's time for the Skinners.
This is where your product experts shine and will maintain your client base better than the Hunter. Skinners are detailed, methodical individuals who thrive on insuring the client is satisfied, and well educated on your product or service. In short, Skinners make sure your clients will most likely purchase more. Skinners can serve in a variety of departments. In Technical Support, Accounting, and Receptionist/Clerical positions, consider putting a Scholar or Technical Specialist profile in place.
These personality types excel at dealing with facts. In your Customer Service Department, consider the Administrator, Operator, Coordinator or Facilitator patterns because of their highly social, congenial nature. People with these patterns prefer to deal with other people and will put your clients at ease. Be sure to have textual and managerial support on hand and enjoy the fruits of the hunt. It will be a good haul.
"Get ahead in business by finding the right people for the right job." You hear that quite frequently and it seems obvious that once you know what you want in the job and in the person, that getting ahead in business would be easy, right?
Recruiting talent is more complex than you think and will involve using Culture Index in ways you may not have considered. Simply using Culture Index on its own is not the most efficient use of this assessment tool.
We created Culture Index, both the company and the survey, to help you find out the applicant's work related traits before you ever meet them. After all, if half the battle of growing your business is having the right people employed, the other half is hiring them for the jobs best suited to them and knowing how to manage and motivate them as well. If you have profiled your company, departments, staff, or sales force, you should examine the group dynamics before you hire another person into the mix.
The Culture Index tool will assist you in this, because you should have profiled your entire staff and you know the group dynamics of each department before you add another person to it. You have attended the Culture Index Workshop and you understand who works well together and why. You know who to hire as managers because you understand basic management principles and how the dynamics of your department work.
Culture Index, the company and the tool provides you with all of this data for an effective talent recruitment strategy.
It's a win-win situation for us all.
Did you know unscheduled absenteeism may cost you as much as $755 per year per employee? How about this for a depressing thought: 85% of applicants are insufficiently skilled to fill their positions and 50% of the working population will reach the minimum level of proficiency and basic job skills necessary to succeed in their careers.
You know what happens when those employees become aware they're not succeeding, of course. They leave.
When that happens, their departure costs an average of 150% of their salary in covering their position, time lost in hiring, training time spent, etc.
Some estimates speculate that by 2006, 20% of the work force will have the skills necessary to do 60% of the jobs.
Now, when 42% of turnover could be eliminated with effective talent retention strategies during hiring and interviewing practices, that seems to be the next logical step in curbing these statistical effects upon your company. Culture Index's list of programs can aid you in a variety of hiring practices to retain talented employees.
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