Today we are living in fascinating times. We see our world and businesses being dramatically impacted by four driving forces. The pandemic has put our societies, politicians, scientists, and companies to a huge test. It is interesting to observe how different countries and people reacted differently to the same circumstances. Global warming has been an important topic of discussion in the last decade, but it has never been so acute and obvious now that the climate is changing. It is clear to everybody that immediate action is required, and politicians and businesses must make some tough decisions. The global economic order has created an economic system that is completely interdependent, and this system is under challenge today.Data, technology, AI, and machine learning are radically transforming societies, economies, and businesses.

Considering all these driving forces, we see a change in the way how customers make decisions and interact with businesses, how companies are managed, and how people work and behave. Business leaders, with the support of HR leaders, have no choice but to change the way how they run their businesses. What worked in the past will probably not work in the future. So, we must find new ways how to run our companies faster, better, and cheaper.As HR leaders, more than ever, we must help organizations to develop and preserve the habits that characterize the NExT talent.

Novelty has always characterised successful businesses throughout the history of economic development and will continue to be a key success factor for companies that embrace it. HR is called upon to play its role in enhancing the right culture that supports novelty within the organization. To make this happen, we must have in place the right talent. The novel talent is ambitious, wants to be challenged, and has the space to learn and explore new horizons. HR should make sure that its processes, starting from hiring and following with performance management, rewards, and development, track the rebel talents and ensure that they remain constructive nonconformists, though becoming a powerful source of innovation within the organization. These talents need to be given the opportunities to be themselves and make them feel authentic. HR leaders should find a way to inject novelty into work. When something new happens at work, we tend to pay attention and engage. Novelty in a talent’s job is more satisfying and rewarding than stability.

Excellence is what distinguishes companies in the market. Delivering excellence to the customers requires leaders and employees with the right habits that will increase their efficiency and enable them to deliver more value to the customers. It starts with the leader, who is one being driven by a value-creation mindset. They are the kind of intellectually humble leaders that understand well where value is created within the organization and are willing to invest in their people. HR leaders should focus their efforts and shape the HR processes in such a way that better supports employees and managers in simplifying their own processes to increase efficiency and deliver customer excellence. Talents with an excellent mindset are usually the ones who have a beginner’s mind. They flourish in organizations that allow them to learn and grow through experiments. Organizations cannot achieve customer excellence without achieving excellent employee experience. This is where HR leaders add value by creating an excellent employee value proposition for their talents.

Technology has become nowadays both organic and transformational in organizations’ life. No company can succeed in the marketplace without the adoption of technology solutions and without the talents who have the technical skills to make things easier. Being open to technology-minded talents is a powerful source of efficiency improvement and productivity increase within the organization. Nowadays, companies are fuelling their organic growth through a digital transformation that cannot be executed without having the technology talent capabilities. HR leaders play a crucial role in attracting and developing digital capabilities such as agile or big data skills. But finding and hiring digital talents is today one of the biggest challenges for HR people. It requiresHR to rethink the digital talent acquisition and retention strategy.We should make sure that we offer the best talents an inspiring strategic narrative and value propositionthat reflects their interests and valuesand motivates them to join and stay in the organization.

Securing the organization’s NExT talent is the eternal challenge of HR leaders. Understanding these talents, reinventing the HR processes, and shaping the HR strategies around them make HR leaders stay relevant and impactful to the company’s business strategy and goals.