Managing Talent in the Networked Age
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Posted by  in Strategy

The employer-employee relationship is broken, and managers face a seemingly impossible dilemma: the old model of guaranteed long-term employment no longer works in a business environment defined by continuous change, but neither does a system in which every employee acts like a free agent.

This is the premise behind a newly published book (The Alliance:  Managing Talent in the Networked Age) written by LinkedIn co-founder and executive chairman Reid Hoffman (along with Ben Casnocha and Chris Yeh).  Reid is known as one of Silicon Valley’s most interesting thinkers whose first book, The Start Up of You, encouraged individuals to think of themselves as entrepreneurs, even if they were collecting a W-2 paycheck.

The forward-thinking writers behind The Alliance suggest that the broken employer-employee relationship issue be addressed with a new way of thinking.  It is true that companies can no longer afford to offer lifetime employment.  But companies can not optimize their business results and build lasting, innovative businesses when everyone acts like a free agent.  The writers suggest that employers start thinking of workers as “allies” on a tour of duty.

LinkedIn recently published an interview with Reid on its blog.  Reid expanded on the concept of “allies” by describing employment as an alliance…a mutually beneficial deal, with explicit terms, between independent players.  In such an alliance, employers and employees develop a relationship based on how they feel they can offer value to each other.  Reid further explained that every employee should be on a tour of duty, and that there are different kinds of tours including:  1) Rotational Tours, 2) Transformational Tours, and 3) Foundational Tours.

This line of thinking is in complete alignment with DARTON GROUP’s business model and foundational to how we build lasting relationships with top-tier consultants (most of whom would agree that consulting engagements could be accurately described as “tours of duty”).

Read Reid’s interview with LinkedIn here.

Purchase The Alliance on Amazon here.

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