Search for Hidden Talent Treasures

Organizations looking for outside talent pay an extraordinary amount of attention to resumes. […] Once people are inside, it’s almost as if some of kind of reset button is pressed: The details of their backgrounds seem to get dumped onto a far-off slag heap, and they become known only for what they do at the new organization. I call this phenomenon resumenesia — a malady causing massive cases of forgetfulness about past experiences that may be the key to unlocking extra value in your organization’s existing talent pool.


Your employees are likely facing similar difficulties. Who in your company speaks German? Who has worked in Southeast Asia? Which people have experience in retail or manufacturing that’s being ignored? Chances are that there is no systematic way to find out this information.


So what can your organization do to prevent resumenesia?

  • Build and propagate internal talent profiles.
  • Make it easy for ad hoc teams to pilot new ideas. This is a variation on an idea proposed many years ago by management guru Gary Hamel: Let talent migrate to the projects they find most compelling as a way to tap into not only the skills but also the insights of employees that might not otherwise surface through a traditional funding approval process.
  • Create intentional bump-and-connect opportunities.
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