The Future is Talent Sufficiency, Not Talent Scarcity

The CEO of Uber recently posed one of the most important questions leaders can ask about their own organizations.

Appearing during the first week of The Late Show with Stephen Colbert, Travis Kalanick was asked about the future of Uber. He focused on Uber Eats, an on-demand food delivery service being quietly rolled out in select cities.

Colbert, in his patently playful manner, acted as though he didn’t understand. How could Uber effectively stockpile fresh food for delivery?

After a few rounds of Colbert jabbing and Kalanick trying to explain, the Uber CEO said:

“Do you want to be part of the future or resist the future?”

Being part of the future has made Kalanick a thought leader. Instead of responding to trends, his company and other innovators (such as Apple, Tesla, and Amazon) are defining the future, right now.

Kalanick’s question, in the context of hiring, warrants time and attention:

Is your company part of the future of hiring or resisting the future?

Here are two important considerations as you ponder this question:

The Future Is About Sufficiency, Not Scarcity

There are two types of companies when it comes hiring—those that are focused on a shortage of talent and others that believe there is enough. Which one is right? Actually, both.

Focus defines strategy.

Leaders who are focused on scarcity pay more attention to the reports and statistics that prove there are shortages of talent. They create strategies that operate from a belief that there aren’t enough people to fill their jobs. Their teams can often be seen scrambling for talent, never seeming to find enough.

The leaders who focus on talent sufficiency are having a different workforce experience. They know there are more qualified people than they’ll ever need to fill their open jobs. By building a strategy that focuses on talent sufficiency, these leaders and their companies dissolve the smoke and break the mirrors. Instead of scrambling to fill seats that have been empty for weeks or even months, these companies fill jobs much more quickly.

The Future Is Fast and Only Getting Faster

Today, speed has become essential in many business transactions.

With regard to speed, Jimmy John’s, for instance, touts “freaky fast delivery.” The restaurant takes an order by phone or app, makes the sandwich, and delivers it to your office in minutes. With Amazon Dash, products like Tide and Gatorade show up at your house the same day you order them. On iTunes, you can watch movies that are currently playing in theaters.

The rise of the on-demand economy is permeating commerce and culture. Regardless of what’s being delivered, the underlying on-demand process remains the same. It is this process, when applied to hiring, that allows companies to hire with speed and accuracy.

In a wide variety of industries, including finance, healthcare, technology, staffing, and manufacturing, organizations that implement an on-demand process are dramatically decreasing time-to-fill.

 

The future has yet to be written. Which is why you can choose, right now, your focus. Sufficiency or scarcity, fast or slow—these are two of the important choices that will impact recruiting and hiring strategies and their results for years to come.

 

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