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What do we actually mean by talent in business? Does it really matter?

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  • Eva Gallardo-Gallardo

    (Universitat de Barcelona)

Abstract

The conceptualization of talent has become increasingly relevant for scholars and practitioners as they seek to advance the study of talent management (TM). Indeed, confusion about the meaning of talent within the business field hinders consensus on the concept and practice of TM. In this theoretical study we review the talent concept in business to summarize what we have learned and to discuss the pros and cons of different approaches. We conclude by formulating an overall definition of this term, since an acknowledged interpretation of talent managementnot to mention the successful management of talent will depend on having a clear understanding of what is meant by talent in an organizational context. Moreover, with our definition of talent, we delimit the talent concept while avoiding problems uncovered in previous definitions (e.g. generality and tautology) and highlighting important variables that affect it and can make it more manageable.

Suggested Citation

  • Eva Gallardo-Gallardo, 2011. "What do we actually mean by talent in business? Does it really matter?," Working Papers in Economics 258, Universitat de Barcelona. Espai de Recerca en Economia.
  • Handle: RePEc:bar:bedcje:2011258
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    JEL classification:

    • M12 - Business Administration and Business Economics; Marketing; Accounting; Personnel Economics - - Business Administration - - - Personnel Management; Executives; Executive Compensation
    • M59 - Business Administration and Business Economics; Marketing; Accounting; Personnel Economics - - Personnel Economics - - - Other
    • M50 - Business Administration and Business Economics; Marketing; Accounting; Personnel Economics - - Personnel Economics - - - General

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