Talent: Innate or acquired? Theoretical considerations and their implications for talent management

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

86 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

In order to contribute to the theoretical understanding of talent management, this paper aims to shed light on the meaning of the term ‘talent’ by answering the following question: Is talent predominantly an innate construct, is it mostly acquired, or does it result from the interaction between (specific levels of) nature and nurture components? Literature stemming from different disciplines has been reviewed to summarize the main arguments in support of each of the three perspectives. Subsequently, these arguments are mapped on a continuum ranging from completely innate to completely acquired. We argue that an organization's position on this continuum entails important implications for its design of talent management practices, which we discuss extensively. By providing guidelines on how an organization's talent management system can be shaped in accordance with their respective talent definition, this paper is particularly useful to HR practitioners.
Keywords: Talent management, Nature, Nature–nurture interaction, Nurture
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)305-321
JournalHuman Resource Management Review
Volume23
Issue number4
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2013

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