This month's Power of Talent newsletter includes a fascinating featured article, blog of the month, the latest about what's new at Torchiana and upcoming events you won't want to miss.
The Power of Talent
Issue: 4
June 2016

When it comes to creating a corporate career development program, does it feel like you're trying to nail Jell-O to a wall? Unfortunately many organizations either de-prioritize this daunting task or combine it with annual performance reviews diluting the potential growth outcomes for both employees and organizations. Neither people nor firms are static, so why are career development program so difficult to launch and maintain when evidence about the payback abounds? As attraction, retention and adaptability continue to be top of mind for most Bay Area companies, HR leaders are asking for programmatic approaches that infuse energy into their people power to operate at a higher level of performance. This month's feature article explores the concept of career empowerment/development programs that encourage a collaborative approach that benefits both individual and organization. 

Check out the Blog of the Month to see how many leaders are taking a new view of career management when it comes to their organizations. Employee training is an investment and often results in an increased awareness of employee talent that can be more fully utilized organizationally. And when the employees are in the zone, everyone benefits! 

Here at Torchiana, we know successful organizations are created through strong teams comprised of the right individuals. As always, our goal is to help you and your company grow through all facets of leadership development, executive coaching, career management and career transition/outplacement services. Please contact us if you'd like to discuss how Torchiana can assist with your career management needs.

All the Best, 
Kristi Rocha & Lynne Saiz
Nailing Jell-O to a Wall

By Victoria Wilson, Executive Coach 

There is a saying in American English that states, "Like nailing Jell-O to a wall," which is an idiom used to describe an endeavor that is challenging because the parameters keep changing or they are not easily defined. At a recent brainstorming meeting with an HR executive who wanted to design a career development program for his organization, I was asked to provide a standard definition of corporate career development. My response was, "At an organizational level, I'm sure that it feels like nailing Jell-O to a wall." After laughing over what initially seemed like an absurd response, we agreed that one of the reasons why organizations struggle to offer career development resources is that there isn't an easy solution that will address all of the needs for all employees. Faced with what seems like such a daunting task, many organizations de-prioritize their employees' career development, or worse yet, give managers a mandate to bundle career development discussions in with their performance reviews, which can cloud the two conversations. 

The challenge and need for a more programmatic approach to address employee career interests requires structure. Torchiana designs and delivers programs that broaden the focus from career development to career empowerment. Employees are empowered with the necessary skills and strategies to design their own career outcomes within an organization and managers are equally prepared to have the discussion. By understanding what is important for success within an organization, we can design solutions that provide an opportunity for employees to grow and develop within their roles, teams and organization. Career development/empowerment programs also help employees to take a holistic view of the different influencers in their lives so they can build a specialized action plan that helps them to be successful both professionally and personally. And when designed properly, there is a direct link to the organization's strategy or needs. 

The feedback on these programs from clients has been incredibly positive; employees feel that leadership is investing in their growth, and the programs offer employees and managers a common language that leads to constructive career conversations. Considering that 70% of American employees feel disengaged in their work (Gallup, 2015), combined with the average replacement cost of one employee in the Bay Area topping $100,000, the ROI on a career empowerment program is substantial.  

All this goes to show that Jell-O can be successfully nailed to a wall after all!
Blog of the Month: Help Employees Identify Career Opportunities

What do you do when your organizational career ladder is no longer pointed upward? What can you do when you have downsized, right-sized and restructured to such an extent that employees are confused about possible development opportunities? What can you do when employees tend to flee from your organization first and ask questions later? 

Today, organizational and human-resource leaders need to take on a new view of career management. They need to develop a partnership with their employees, working together to building skills that benefit the organization and the employee in the long term.  

Leaders need to understand employee training is an investment rather than creating a flight risk.  

Finally, a new view of career management will give leaders an opportunity to take a holistic view of all their organizational roles and the skills required within the larger workflow, and to identify unexpected career opportunities. 

Read more about how to help employees identify their career opportunities in this blog post.
What's New?

Career Partners International Names Douglas J. Matthews New President & CEO 
Accomplished Business Leader with Extensive Experience in Career Transition and Talent Management Assumes Leadership of One of World's Largest Talent Management Consultancies 

Boston, MA (June 15, 2016) - Career Partners International (CPI), one of the largest talent management career services consultancies in the world, announced today that they have named Douglas J. Matthews as their new President & CEO. An accomplished business leader, Matthews has held senior leadership positions within the career transition and talent management industry during his career. In his new role, Matthews will provide full leadership responsibility to drive CPI's brand visibility nationally and globally. Building on CPI's unique strengths, he will work to grow global market share and competitive differentiation of CPI's best-in-class services. 

"We could not be more pleased to welcome Doug to Career Partners International as our President & CEO," said Sharon Imperiale, Chair of CPI's Board of Directors. "Our clients across the globe count on us to provide innovative and world class talent management solutions for their employees and we take that responsibility seriously. Given Doug's broad experience in the Talent Management space along with his extremely successful past in our industry, he will lead us in meeting our goal to be the world leader in Talent Management and Career Transition." 

Before joining CPI, Matthews worked with the Columbus Council on World Affairs, consulting with business people to become more globally fluent. Prior to that, he served as President & COO of Right Management after many years of holding critical roles within the organization. He also held the position of Director at The Center for Employment Resources earlier in his career. 

"When I had the opportunity to meet with several of CPI's equity partners, it became abundantly clear that CPI's commitment to incredible client service with intense integrity surpassed any that I had experienced in my entire career," Matthews said. "By far, CPI offers career transition programs and talent management solutions that deliver proven results that matter intensely to individuals and organizations." 

Please feel free to reach out to Doug at

About Career Partners International 
Founded in 1987, Career Partners International is one of the largest talent management consultancies in the world. From more than 270 offices in over 45 countries, consultants of Career Partners International provide talent management, executive coaching, career management, and career transition services to clients worldwide.
Upcoming Events

Bay Area OD Network: Using Improvisation to Become More Self-Aware and Mindful OD Practitioners 
When: June 29, 6:30pm 
Where: Kabam, 795 Folsom Street, Suite 600, San Francisco, CA 

NCHRA: Greater Tri-Valley, East Bay, & Contra Costa Summer Social 
When: June 29, 5:30pm - 7:30pm 
Where: Scott's Seafood, 1333 N California Blvd, Walnut Creek, CA 

HRSTAR Conference 
When: July 13, 8:30am - 4:30pm 
Where: South San Francisco Conference Center, 255 South Airport Blvd, South San Francisco, CA 

NCHRA: Santa Clara Summer Social 
When: July 13, 5:30pm - 7:30pm 
Where: Hotel DeAnza, 233 W Santa Clara St, San Jose, CA 
About Torchiana Mastrov & Sapiro

Established in 1980, Torchiana is the Bay Area's most experienced independent career management firm. Our staff of professionals have expertise in all facets of leadership development, executive coaching, career management and career transition/outplacement services. We have established strategic alliances with select organizations to fulfill additional human capital and business needs. 

We firmly believe that your people are your most valuable asset. Our offices in San Francisco, San Ramon and Santa Clara provide service to more than 300 companies and we deliver our services worldwide through Career Partners International (CPI).
San Francisco & East Bay
Kristi Rocha | VP, Client Services 
50 California Street, Suite 1500, San Francisco, CA 94111
2603 Camino Ramon, Ste. 200, San Ramon, CA 94583
Silicon Valley & Peninsula
Lynne Saiz VP, Client Services 
5201 Great America PKWY, Suite 320, Santa Clara, CA 95054