November 11, 2020

Why is Talent Management Important for Financial Planning Practices?    

We all know the definition of talent and management, but what exactly does talent management mean?

Vlad Vaiman explored this definition when opening his webinar interview with Dr. Chia-Li Chien. Essentially, talent management is a set of meaningful techniques. Vaiman explained there are four components to it;

  • Identifying and Attracting (which includes the process of recruitment).
  • Developing talented employees.
  • Managing the employees.
  • Retaining the organization’s most valuable employees.

Many confuse talent management with human resources as the roles appear similar, but Vaiman explained they are different from one another. The human resources role is to assist talent management. Human resources work with all the employees within the company, while talent management works with a niche of those who have key skillsets and talent. 

Executive Talent Management Forum

For the previous five years, Vaiman has been participating in the Executive Talent Management Forum. This forum brings experts and organizations together from both inside and outside of the local Ventura area, such as The Cheesecake Factory and Amgen. It is to build a bridge between the industry and academia through leveraging participants extensive knowledge and experience, Vaiman said. Every year a different topic is explored and looked at, this year the virtual forum discussed Talent Management Automation and Employment.

How Should Companies Keep Up with Employees?

Living in a digitalized world we are more connected and virtual than ever before, especially after using virtual meetings to work and connect with others due to the pandemic. “More and more companies are using some sort of automation, either artificial intelligence or digitalization or process automation or robots or even virtual reality. Over 60% of the responses from the survey said they are working with talent management differently due to the changes in technology. Companies need to keep up with this,” Vaiman said. It is so essential to stay up-to-date with technology and incorporate it into the workspace.

Maintaining Skills and Competition

Vaiman explained there are three ways that skills and competition can be maintained.

  • Redeploy
  • Upskill
  • Reskill

Redeploy looks at transferring employees to another part of the company. Upskill is taking the essence of what an employee does and helping them improve to be more advance and gifted. In the financial industry, an example of this would be developing counseling and coaching skills with clients.

Reskilling is reframing to do something new. What could a person with a set of skills be good at in the future? This is the opportunity to help prepare them and be strategic, Vaiman said. as it makes an “Effective and efficient use of human capital.” A great hockey player named Wayne Gretzy said “I always thought not where the puck was, but where it was going to be,” when asked about success. This is the mindset employers need to have with their employees, explained Vaiman.

In order for reskilling to be effective, there should be clear communication between employees and employers from the start. Don’t create false expectations, Vaiman said. The most effective way to fulfill this is to be explicit during recruiting as it creates an environment of mutual trust. Good companies encourage promotion from within therefore you want to have mutual trust and clear expectations from the start.

Talent Shortage

Talent shortage happens in some industries and there are a number of outside reasons that are currently affecting the employee market. An aging population, decline in skills, and changed employee attitudes, such as seeking more power and a better work-life balance, means shortages are happening in many areas. The financial industry is one of those areas that are currently facing a shortage. There are two options to recruit effectively, explained Vaiman. The first is attracting new talent, and the second is retaining talent.

The areas of importance for attraction are;

  • Talent in planning and deployment
  • Employer branding
  • Aggressive sourcing
    • Target specific individual profiles – skillsets or personality.
    • Employ from foreign markets.
    •  Create a more diverse pool of applications using non-traditional sources.

“Having 100% retention is not healthy, you need to have some fresh blood once in a while. But, in order to achieve a proper or acceptable level of retention you always need to look for signs of trouble. Look for low morale and lack of trust, concentration, or decreased productivity,” Vaiman said.

The six reasons for maintaining retention from an employee perspective are;

  • Exciting work challenges
  • Career growth opportunities
  • Work autonomy, therefore, no micromanagement
  • Fair play and benefits
  • A good, understanding boss
  • Recognition for a job well done

Vaiman suggested these ideas to keep retention within the workplace;

  • Pay close to project staffing – have teams on rotation
  • Make assignments interesting and stimulating.
  • Emphasize the recruiting process
  • Delegate the decision making power
  • Employ analytical tools to manage human capital e.g. engagement, satisfaction
  • Help employees find a proper balance between personal and professional lives
Vaiman’s Recommendations to Companies That Need to Grow

For the companies that want or need to grow Vaiman said, “Do whatever makes sense to you, to your company, and your strategies on whether you should promote from within or find someone new. Everything depends on your strategy. The problem is many organizations start in the middle. You must start with your strategy. What is your mission and vision? What do you want to achieve in five year’s time?” 

By looking at the very beginning of the steps of what the company is about, it will help you determine what is the next best move is in order to achieve the goals, explained Vaiman.

Lastly, Vaiman’s parting advice in the webinar was to those that want a growing team within their company. “Get to know your people… Know what they like, dislike, family situation, and what motivates them, only then will you be able to help them most effectively and efficiently,” he said. 

720About Vlad Vaiman:

Dr. Vlad Vaiman is a professor of International Management at California Lutheran University in the USA and is a visiting professor at several top universities around the world, including Aalto University School of Business and Hanken School of Economics (both in Finland), Danube University of Krems, and Management Center Innsbruck (both in Austria), Reykjavik University (Iceland), ISEG (France), etc.

He holds a Ph.D. degree in International Management from the University of St. Gallen in Switzerland and has received his MBA in Strategic Management and Human Resources at the School of Business of the University of Wyoming, USA.  His professional experience included working on various consulting assignments for a number of major organizations throughout the world, including the USA, Canada, Switzerland, Austria, Russia, and some other European countries.  Dr. Vaiman is a long-time member of the Canadian Association of Management Consultants and a highly sought-after speaker on topics of talent management and cross-cultural communication and negotiations.

Dr. Vaiman has published five very successful books on managing talent in organizations – Smart Talent Management: Building Knowledge Assets for Competitive Advantage (Edward Elgar Publishing); Talent Management of Knowledge Workers: Embracing the Non-Traditional Workforce (Palgrave MacMillan); Managing Talent of Self-initiated Expatriates (Palgrave MacMillan); Macro Talent Management: A Global Perspective on Managing Talent in Developed Markets (Routledge); and Macro Talent Management in Emerging and Emergent Markets: A Global Perspective (Routledge).

Dr. Vaiman’s academic work has appeared in several top academic journals including the Academy of Management Learning & Education, Academy of Management Perspectives, Human Resource Management, Thunderbird International Business Review, International Journal of Human Resource Management, and others. He is also a co-founder and Chief Editorial Consultant of the European Journal of International Management (EJIM), an ISI/SSCI indexed publication (, and a member of editorial boards of three other major international academic and practitioner peer-reviewed journals.

Chia-Li Chien, PhD, CFP®, PMP®About the Host:

Dr. Chia-Li Chien is a succession program director at Value Growth Institute, a succession consulting practice dedicated to helping business owners increase their firms’ equity value. Before her private consulting practice, she held several senior management positions in Fortune 500 companies. Dr. Chien is a director of the financial planning program at the School of Management at California Lutheran University. Dr. Chien is a frequent speaker about succession and retirement planning at national conferences and has published three award-winning books, including her most recent publication, “Enhancing Retirement Success Rates in the United States.” Dr. Chien serves on the boards of various national financial service associations. She holds a doctorate in financial planning and is a Certified Financial Planner (CFP®) as well as Project Management Professional (PMP®).

IMG_5784About the Author:

Rosie Baker is an undergraduate student at California Lutheran University, graduating in May 2021. She is studying Communication with an emphasis in PR and Advertising and has a minor in Creative Writing. In July 2020, she published her first book, Mirrors & Windows: Unlocking a New Framework to Envision Your Success, with New Degree Press.


In this webinar, Dr. Chien interviewed Dr. Vlad Vaiman on “Why is Talent Management Important for Financial Planning Practices?”

The aging advisor population and shortage of talents in the Financial Planning industry could reshape the profession. In this session, they  discuss the following questions:

  • The latest Executive Talent Management Forum 2020 (participant survey results) and recordings.
  • The financial service industry is known for using technology such as  FinTech. What should employers do to retain their talents?
  • What could employers and employees do to up-keep their skills and remain competitive?
  • What are some firm team structures that could help employers address the shortage? (4-10 partners firms)