Unleash your organization’s untapped skills

Unleashing employees’ untapped skills can help you engage and motivate employees, attract and retain top talent and provide a competitive advantage.

Some organizations only use a fraction of their talent because they lack the strategies and tools to identify it. Untapped talent results in trapped value and skills gaps, emphasizing the importance of unleashing this hidden potential. According to a recent Deloitte survey, only 18 percent of executives strongly agree that their workforce fully utilizes its skills and qualifications. Creating more agile methods of organizing work enables teams to put their skills and capabilities to better use, unleashing untapped skills and talent.

Untapped skills are employees’ talents and potential that an organization fails to harness to its detriment. As a result, employees may become frustrated and dissatisfied if they cannot fully use their skills and abilities. Another consequence of untapped talent is that it can significantly impact an organization’s performance.

Why does talent go unnoticed?

Some organizations overlook talent, while others recognize that their organization has more significant potential but are unsure how to access it. There are several reasons for this:

  • Lack of awareness: Managers and leaders may be unaware of their organization’s untapped skills and talent. They may not think to look for it, or they may not know how.
  • Lack of opportunity: Not everyone has the chance to use their skills and abilities. Employees may become trapped in a job that doesn’t allow them to use their talents or provide them with opportunities to develop their skills.
  • Lack of recognition: Employees may not feel appreciated for their skills and abilities. They may not receive recognition or feedback from their managers.
  • Fear of failure: Employees may be afraid to try new things or take risks. They may be concerned about making mistakes or failing to meet expectations. People need space to fail and learn. 
  • Lack of motivation: Employees may not be motivated to use their skills and abilities. They may not see the value in it, or they may not believe their efforts are sufficiently rewarded.

There are several ways to unleash talent in your organization:

1. Identify skills gaps: Create skills matrices to identify talent gaps in your organization. Once you have identified the gaps, teach the appropriate skills. If an employee’s deficiency falls outside their scope, determine which critical competencies are needed for each position and provide additional on-the-job training opportunities to close the gap before it becomes too much trouble. Skills management software tools can help you map employee skills to identify skills gaps.

2. Create opportunities for employees to use their skills: Ensure employees have the chance to use their abilities. Give them assignments that allow them to stretch themselves and try new things. 

3. Recognize and reward employees who use their skills: Give them feedback and tell them when they’re doing well. Offer incentives for empolyees’ using their talents.

4. Encourage employees to take risks: Encourage employees to experiment. Let them know it’s okay to make mistakes. Inspire them to learn from their experiences.

5. Promote a learning culture: Allow employees time and opportunities to learn new skills and develop their adjacent skills and abilities. Think of creative ways for them to share what they’ve learned with others. 

6. Invest in employee development: Invest in employee development programs that help employees learn new skills and develop their abilities. These programs can help employees realize their untapped potential. 

Unleashing your organization’s untapped skills can help you engage and motivate employees, attract and retain top talent and provide a competitive advantage. By unleashing the talent in your organization, you can reap the numerous benefits it has to offer.