Identifying Talent

Identifying Talent

How do you know if the person you're interviewing is right for the job?

How can you tell whether someone has the potential to be promoted?

These decisions about people are some of the most important that you have to make and the consequences of getting it wrong can be messy and costly. And yet how many managers receive any training in assessing or identifying talent? What do you have to go on?

Too often, people don't really know what they're looking for and rely on gut instinct. Instinct has its place. There are things we can tell about each other - such as whether to be wary - without being consciously aware of how we know. But relying on gut feel alone is a massive risk.

"I'll know it when I see it" is not a sound selection strategy. You might end up choosing someone who is just like you, resulting in an organisation full of clones. Or you may select someone who vaguely reminds you of a person you admired in the past, but who turns out to be nothing like them. Even if you know what you're looking for, it's hard to tell just from an interview whether you've found it.

This is where the application of psychology can add huge value, identifying people's capabilities and giving you an idea of how they behave when they're not in 'interview mode'. As a Chartered Psychologist, Caroline has years of experience of assessing people for jobs at all levels, from managing directors to technical specialists to new graduates. She can help you work out exactly what you're looking for and provide sophisticated assessment tools to help you find it.

Wouldn't you rather make a decision knowing the answer to questions such as:

  • Is the job too big for this person?
  • Does this candidate have the potential to go further?
  • Can they think strategically?
  • How are they likely to treat people?
  • How well will they fit into our organisational culture?
  • How will they react under pressure?
  • What's really driving them - and is it going to drive them to do something weird?

Caroline says "There are no certainties in selection, but I can help you reduce a lot of the risk by giving you a clearer picture of a candidate's capability, potential, personality and motivation".

To find out more, contact Caroline at caroline@carolinegourlay.co.uk.



Caroline has been very helpful in developing efficient selection strategies to ensure we choose the right candidates. The selection techniques provide the added benefit of helping with development programmes for the staff once they have joined the company. Mark Gordon, CEO, T Jolly Services Ltd                        Caroline's assessments really get under the skin of a person. They don't just help us decide whether to take a person on but how to manage them and what to watch out for once they've started. Andrew Wood, Finance Director, Rock Roofing                        Caroline's assessments are very thought-provoking. She's stopped me recruiting the wrong people and identified the best candidates. You get a really rounded view of a person, their potential and how to get the best from them. John Midgley, MD, Touchstone