Many business owners understand the importance of developing a talent strategy that meets the current demands of the remodeling industry — from project managers and installers to sales and marketing professionals — but strategic business leaders also understand the criticality of developing a talent pipeline within their organization that can meet future needs. Fresh off the heels of the housing crisis when our industry took a financial hit that closed the doors of many businesses, the need to forecast future requirements is more important than ever.
A future-oriented planning process is essential to effectively align your talent pool with the needs of both the present and future. This process has three critical components:
- Industry Forecasting. It’s important to understand the forces of change that will impact the status quo of the remodeling industry, and spotting future needs for leadership within your organization requires an understanding of the dynamics that can drastically change the industry in the years ahead. Scan the business landscape for trends that will influence how work is accomplished, and position your company accordingly. Gathering perspectives through analysis and planning help surface potential game-changing forces that can ultimately change the nature of your workforce.
- Thinking Strategically. Most organizations have some type of strategy planning effort that accompanies annual budgeting, but it’s important for leaders throughout your business to understand the need for constant strategic thinking and planning — and adjusting the course as needed — throughout the year. By involving your HR department in strategically planning for the future, their insight of the environment and expertise in evaluating opportunities will help you effectively leverage your talent pool. Challenge your HR team to offer substantive contributions on how environmental changes may offer opportunity and risk, and help guide the link to future talent needs.
- Developing a Leader Profile. Finally, challenge yourself to develop a profile of what an ideal leader looks like in the context of your organization. Use your future strategy and goals to help define the capabilities, knowledge and behaviors your organization will need to execute and ultimately succeed. It’s important to involve current executives in this development process to help validate what it will realistically take to succeed down the road from their vantage point.
The components of a future-oriented planning process can help develop your talent pipeline in a time when uncertainty reigns in the business landscape to safeguard your organization from future disruption. By staying in tune with industry shifts and developing leaders within your business who learn how to do the same, your organization will be nimble when it comes time to weather future challenges.
Asher Raphael is the Chief Strategy Officer of Power Home Remodeling Group, the nation’s sixth largest home remodeling company with more than 1,200 employees and $170 million in annual sales. Power provides energy-saving and environmentally friendly exterior remodeling solutions to homeowners in Pennsylvania, Connecticut, Delaware, Georgia, Illinois, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Virginia, and Washington, D.C. Asher oversees the company’s overall strategic direction, which includes evaluating and directing new business opportunities, partner alliances, government relations and national expansion. Asher is also instrumental in the critical recruitment and development of prospective and existing talent, overseeing the company’s talent acquisition department. An Inc. 5000 company, Power has served more than 87,000 homeowners and is recognized as a home improvement leader by its "Dealer of the Year" award from Window and Door Magazine and the 2011 "Top Workplace" from The Philadelphia Inquirer.