Talk-about Talent: Underlying Philosophies on Talent in Thai SMEs

Lawless, A, Panya, F, O'Brien, Seamus ORCID logoORCID: and Kok, S (2019) Talk-about Talent: Underlying Philosophies on Talent in Thai SMEs. Human Resource Development International, 22 (5). pp. 553-572. ISSN 1367-8868

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Abstract / Summary

This paper provides insight into talent philosophies, the fundamental assumptions and beliefs about talent that are held by key decision-makers, in three award-winning Thai Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs). Interviews were conducted with fifteen key decision-makers: the owner-manager of each SME and four managers the owner-manager identified as ‘talent’. A discourse perspective informs the research and we draw on community of practice (CoP) theory as a heuristic device, enabling insights into decision-makers talk-about talent and the implications of this talk. We highlight shared fundamental assumptions regarding the exclusivity of talent and beliefs that talent is both stable (natural ability) and developable (mastery). We reveal an emerging dilemma between the ‘talent community’ and ‘wider community’; in particular a tension between decision-makers’ beliefs that talent are ‘promotable’ and expectations in this cultural context. We contribute a conceptual representation of talent philosophies within this Thai context and discuss how this discursive construction of talent enables and constrains participation and learning in these SMEs.

Item Type: Article
Identification Number: 10.1080/13678868.2019.1656988
Additional Information: Special issuse on SMEs
ISSN: 1367-8868
Subjects: Business
Depositing User: Seamus O'Brien
Date Deposited: 16 Feb 2021 13:19
Last Modified: 12 Nov 2021 11:06


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