Baseball Sabermetrics are Years Ahead of the Metric Practices in Corporate Talent Management

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By now, hopefully, you realize that baseball sabermetrics metrics in the decision-making process that utilizes them are literally years ahead of the metric practices in corporate Talent Management. Most baseball metrics are provided in “real time” so managers have them at the precise time when they are needed to make a decision. Other baseball metrics are forward-looking. These “predictive talent decision metrics” accurately guide executives in important talent decisions including who to hire, how much to pay and how long a player will continue to add value.


Even “old school” baseball managers now realize that the use of metrics for talent decisions can result in more productive hires, increased revenue, and significantly more wins. But in the corporate talent management world, there is for some reason still major resistance. In my view, the time has come for the corporate world to focus its attention on how major-league teams use metrics and how their approach can be converted for use in the corporate world. Already other sports have made the transition, including Olympic sports, soccer, basketball, and football. Unfortunately, corporate talent metrics (with the exception of Google, the world’s only data-driven talent function) are still in my estimation, at least, five years behind. So I suggest that you jump at any opportunity to work with baseball professionals and avoid the “trial and error learning” that now dominates corporate metric teams.


Dr. John Sullivan will be speaking about this and more at BPI’s TalentBall with the Texas Rangers in April. Joining Rangers’ top executives including GM Jon Daniels, its CFO, Head of Analytics, VP of HR and others, Dr. Sullivan will be bridging the gap between the successful Moneyball tactics and corporate talent and business results. Click here to register today for TalentBall.

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Dr. John Sullivan
Dr John Sullivan is an internationally known HR thought-leader from the Silicon Valley who specializes in providing bold and high business impact; strategic Talent Management solutions. He’s a prolific author with over 900 articles and 10 books covering all areas of Talent Management. He has written over a dozen white papers, conducted over 50 webinars, dozens of workshops and he has been featured in over 35 videos. He is an engaging corporate speaker who has excited audiences at over 300 corporations / organizations in 30 countries on all 6 continents. His ideas have appeared in every major business source including the Wall Street Journal, Fortune, BusinessWeek, Fast Company, CFO, Inc., NY Times, SmartMoney, USA Today, HBR and the Financial Times. In addition, he writes for the WSJ Experts column and the LinkedIn Talent blog. He has been interviewed on CNN and the CBS and ABC nightly news, NPR, as well many local TV and radio outlets. Fast Company called him the “Michael Jordan of Hiring”, called him “the father of HR metrics” and SHRM called him “One of the industries most respected strategists”. He was selected among HR’s “Top 10 Leading Thinkers” and he was ranked #8 among the top 25 online influencers in Talent Management. He served as the Chief Talent Officer of Agilent Technologies, the HP spinoff with 43,000 employees and he was the CEO of the Business Development Center, a minority business consulting firm in Bakersfield, California. He is currently a Professor of Management at San Francisco State (1982 – present).