Dr. Tomas Chamorro-Premuzic is the Chief Talent Scientist at ManpowerGroup and Professor of Business Psychology at Columbia University and the University College in London. Tomas has written 10 books and over 150 scientific papers on the psychology of talent, leadership, innovation and AI. He has also delivered multiple TED Talks, including one on “The Power of Negative Thinking” and another on “Why do so Many Incompetent Men Become Leaders”.
What is a Chief Talent Scientist? In Tomas’ case it means combining his expertise and background in organizational psychology and analytics & assessments. Tomas says, “If you combine both things, and an interest in understanding human performance, then you get the kind of interface or the main area niche that I specialize. And at Manpower Group, our agreement is to really use all of our data, our tools and expertise to predict performance and understand human potential in a deeper way.”
ManpowerGroup’s main purpose is to “understand where people can be deployed most effectively, and where people will be thriving, and what role, job, or capacity. And then helping organizations not just deal with their current talents, but predict what their future talent issues might be.”
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They are currently working to help match people with jobs that they have the potential for, but have never actually done in their lives. For example, there may be a marketing employee who would be great in more of a customer service role, but they have never worked directly with customers before. In the past this employee may not have been considered for a role in customer service because of their lack of experience. But ManpowerGroup is looking at how data assessment and AI can be used to match the employee with a role that matches their skills without past experience.
One of the biggest trends that Tomas has been paying attention to is the growing need for soft skills like empathy, emotional intelligence, teamwork, resilience, and creativity. As technology advances and we start using more AI, automation, and data assessment inside of our organizations, there is going to be a greater need for people to be more human.
“The last things machines are going to be able to do is to show respect, appreciation, or care for others. So in a way, even though you would think that as technology and AI becomes a more prominent aspect of jobs and careers, we should all become data scientists, geeks of one sort or another, and learn coding, actually the real need is for people who develop and boost their human skills, the soft side of talent, which is actually the hardest one to develop and to find.”
Tomas’ advice to job candidates today and in the coming future is to be flexible, adaptable, and well-rounded. Things are changing and in order to succeed you can’t pigeon hole yourself into one role, or a specific job title. It is important to be curious and to constantly learn new skills. AI and automation will disrupt jobs, individuals can thrive, but they can’t expect to do so if they sit back and expect to be safe in one single role for the rest of their life.
“Fundamentally, we believe that there will always be three core employability skills that will continue to matter in the future. This is what we use when we assess candidates, when we evaluate potential and when we try to almost distill all the different jobs and careers to their fundamental core elements. These are learning ability, so the ability to learn new things, reason and acquire new knowledge and expertise. The second is work ethic or drive, determination. And the third is, people skills.”
What You Will Learn In This Episode:
What is the role of a Chief Talent Scientist
Tomas’ view of science vs. intuition when it comes to hiring talent
Why we need to rethink the way we promote and train leaders
Tomas’ advice for candidates looking for a new job
The best way to take criticism and negative feedback
Why soft skills are becoming so important for the future of work