Managing. Human. Capital.

When you ally the word ‘capital’ to ‘human’ you start to make people into an asset that can be invested. They begin to be equated with money. And that, I submit, is the way that we should – and can – view the whole process.

When we invest money in a business we follow up that investment by tracking the share price and comparing the dividend. We look out for news items about the companies we’ve invested in. Bad news – should we sell? Good news – buy more? We have skin in the game and we pore over all the metrics to find out how our money is doing. We care about our investment.

But when we recruit people into a business, we plant them in their new team and walk away. If they’re not salespeople we have few ways of observing their progress and finding out if the investment was worthwhile. We get reports from time to time from their line manager, but these are frustratingly subjective. We have no real way of knowing if we have made the right decision.

Talent investment – a better strategy?

Talent investment is a phrase that has a golden ring about it. It sees people as valuable items who should produce double, tenfold, maybe a hundredfold their value. When you have an item that has the potential to produce a hundred times its own worth, you look after it, don’t you? You watch it daily as it develops and give it everything it needs. You treat it with care and place it in the right environment.

It’s the difference between scattering seed on the ground and hoping some of it springs up versus a scientific approach of sowing seeds into carefully prepared ground where they’ll receive exactly the right amount of sunlight and water.

Now there is a scientific approach to planting people into carefully prepared ground. It involves a detailed exploration of the business team you’re about to endow with a new team member (the prepared ground) as well as a perfect understanding of the natural capabilities of that member (the seed).

The new approach works. It is associated with unprecedented levels of employee engagement, productivity of circa 90% of potential and staff retention results that are putting cobwebs on recruitment interview rooms around the globe.

The new approach is embodied in Method Teaming, our well-established teaming science. It can be taught to anyone. But Method Teaming is especially relevant to those who want their human capital to produce a hundredfold return. Method Teaming gives you a 3D view that you’ve never had before, right inside the minds of your employees. It will point out the exact place in the exact team where they’ll flourish and where, because they’re engaged like never before, they’ll help others flourish. You might be a venture capitalist. You might be a hiring manager. Or you might be in HR. But whoever you are, if that’s the kind of talent investment you’re looking for, you now know how to sow that seed.

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