Characteristics of high potential employees/high performance/Benefits

High-potential employees are a valuable asset for every company. Not only are they more productive and encourage those around them to do better, they also strive to excel in their current roles with the goal of going above and beyond the expected. Characteristics of high potential employees

What are high potential employees?

High Potential Employees (HIPOs) are employees who display the skills needed for a leadership or management position. These employees are ambitious and take initiative in all their tasks. They have the potential, skill and aspiration to succeed in leadership positions. Typically, HIPOs excel in their current roles and want more responsibilities. They have a strong will to grow in their role and overcome any obstacles they may encounter.

The difference between high potential and high performance

High-potential and high-performing employees are not the same thing. High performance refers to employees who excel in their current roles. They tend to set and crush goals, such as exceeding their quarterly sales targets. These employees function well on their own and have an innate ability to stay focused on the tasks at hand. However, they typically don’t have the people skills, such as leadership or a learning mindset, to be a great leader. Characteristics of high potential employees

HIPOs, on the other hand, have the potential to be a strong asset when it comes to management functions. They have the people skills needed to learn the role and lead their team to achieve company goals. High performers tend to excel in an individual setting, while HIPOs excel in a group setting.

What makes social skills so important?

Personal skills or soft skills are non-negotiable when it comes to a leadership role. For example, having empathy can allow your leaders to connect with the team and see situations from their perspective. Empowering these future leaders to develop such soft skills will help your company in the long run.

One mistake organizations tend to make is promoting high-performing employees when they should be promoting high-potential employees. 90% of high-performing employees have difficulty adjusting to the higher levels of responsibility required to lead. At the end of the day, confusing high performers with high potential can cost your company time, money, and potentially even the employees themselves.

Benefits of identifying your high potential employees

Identifying high-potential employees will benefit your company in the long run. It is important to know which employees are trusted to carry out the various tasks and projects to achieve your company’s goals. When organizations identify and develop their employee HIPOs, they often see many benefits in their business processes and functions. Characteristics of high potential employees

High-potential employees benefit your company by:

– Increase productivity: HIPOs are known to be highly productive. They set strong goals for themselves and have the discipline and desire to carry them out. HIPOs not only accomplish their own goals, they also work to encourage those around them to do the same.

– Enabling succession planning: Every organization needs to have a roadmap for success. This involves succession plans for senior executives and plans to manage employee departures and promotions. Your HIPOs need to know the plan you have in place and how they contribute to the overall mission.

– Save money: When it comes to identifying and developing HIPO contributors, your company will save time and money. These employees are quick learners and have a greater need to develop new skills, which means they are more willing to take on new professional development opportunities.

– Help you identify strengths: HIPOs are often very self-conscious contributors. This means they know their own strengths and weaknesses and how to apply those skills for real growth and success. Often, HIPOs also help other employees realize their unique skill set. This allows your company to stand out from the existing talent in your organization.

While the above benefits are the most commonly recognized advantages for developing your HIPOs, it is possible to do a value-added benefit analysis. This can include an increase in revenue and improved morale. Organizations should strive to identify and develop their high-potential employees whenever possible.

7 Characteristics of a high-performing employee

Today, we are going to look at 7 characteristics of this type of people, which set the stage for achieving a high level of performance and productivity within an organization. Let’s see: Characteristics of high potential employees

1-Know how to listen:

High-performing employees listen to their colleagues, bosses, and employees with attention and respect , respond with arguments, and accept comments and suggestions that are conveyed to them in a feedback process. Based on the information received, they create new and better strategies to take advantage of the identified improvement opportunities, which allows them to optimize their working methods, all in an attempt to improve their productivity and that of their team.


The best employees focus on the positive. Although positive things do not always happen in a company, these people try to identify the good side of each situation, even if it is very negative, to turn it into an opportunity for improvement and not make the mistakes that led to it. This view of things helps them to commit to their work and find solutions instead of creating more problems.


High-performing employees have a clear sense of their roles and responsibilities and own up to their mistakes and successes while performing the tasks they are in charge of. These people don’t look for excuses, they meet the deadlines for delivering their projects, they don’t commit to impossible dates and, if they can’t finish on time, they communicate to the superior the reasons for this impossibility so that they can then set a new date. Characteristics of high potential employees

4-Time management:

High -performing employees are able to manage their available time and meet their meetings, appointments, deliveries and tasks without major inconvenience. It all depends on their careful planning of activities and their management of resources to fulfill their obligations within a reasonable timeframe. These people know when to say no and don’t let their bosses down when they commit to something.

5-own goals

These employees define their  own goals and are not limited to those defined by the company. They look for opportunities to finish projects ahead of schedule and ways to optimize their resources and budget. High-performing workers seek to identify opportunities to take advantage of and  exceed their own expectations , those of their team and the company.


High-performing employees are always willing to take on new challenges and difficult tasks that others in the company avoid. They are ready to solve problems , create new strategies to change some wrong direction, avoid repeating mistakes and focus on what is really important and not just what is urgent.

7-Commitment to personal development:

High-potential employees are not complacent with their work, they demand more and more every day, learn from their mistakes, reflect on causes and convert them into opportunities. These employees learn something every day, it’s not necessarily always dazzling, but they know that learning is made up of small actions.

All of these habits configure a high-performing and projection employee and reflect that the person is happy and committed to their work and to the team around them. These employees create relationships of trust and respect to achieve the proposed objectives and be able to advance to the next level of demand and development . Characteristics of high potential employees

While it is important to maintain the commitment of the entire workforce, it is even more important to maintain that of high-performing employees. Their retention is the key to the company’s success, these people are often chosen to assume strategic positions in the future, so it is essential to establish a career plan that allows them to advance as they achieve their goals and develop their full potential for the future. put at the service of the organization.

How to identify high potential employees

The first step in identifying HIPO contributors is observing your employees to see who has the management or supervisory skills needed to lead your team in the right direction. There are certain criteria in identifying high potential employees. Criteria can include knowledge, reputation and certainty. Other common features include:

– Take the initiative and desire to lead: Employees with high potential take the initiative to help whenever they can. HIPOs are willing and able to take the reins and ensure their team meets their goals, going beyond their job description to help fill the gaps in their company.

– Have an entrepreneurial mindset: HIPOs think ahead. They are well versed in all aspects of the business and are always looking at the big picture. Your HIPOs will be individuals who invest in your company’s goals and work to support your teams when needed.

– Make decisions and act on them: It is important to have someone who can make a decision and stick to it. Most importantly, your organization needs someone who can execute decisions when needed.

– Be flexible in fast-paced environments: Most companies today operate at high speed. HIPOs need to be flexible and adapt to changes as they arise. Your high-potential employees must be able to make quick changes when needed. Characteristics of high potential employees

– Be committed and engaged: These employees are loyal to the company’s goals. HIPOs also love to ask questions. It could be to get clarification or ask for more information to gain a deeper understanding of your tasks. Still, your high-potential employees have an innate desire to learn and a curiosity to take their team to the next level.

– Foster positive relationships: Employees who can develop positive internal and external relationships are well prepared for leadership roles. The ability to form meaningful and positive relationships in the workplace helps keep your team motivated and engaged.

– Perform leadership roles: Employees who perform leadership roles are considered a high-value asset to your team. HIPOs also stand out for requiring little or no guidance. They are able to take a task and execute it, which means the organization will spend less time guiding and supporting them along the way.

– Be talented at your job: Finally, potential HIPOs are employees who excel in their current roles. The employees best equipped to be future leaders are always working hard to motivate themselves and their team members in the right direction. Characteristics of high potential employees

Development of high potential employees

When it comes to developing your high potential employees, you need to have a strong and credible development program. Where to start? One option is to implement a mentoring program. By pairing their HIPOs with a more experienced leader within their organization, they can learn the intricacies and nuances of leadership roles before jumping in. Their mentor can provide guidance, training and feedback as they take on their new roles.

Another strategy that needs to be included in your development program is an individualized and customized career plan for each employee. Focused career paths are a transparent way for employees to know what the future holds. Not only will they see a roadmap of where they are and where they can go within your organization, but they also reassure your employees that you are investing in their future.

Finally, implementing online learning programs can benefit your organization. Such programs are very useful as they do not require as significant a commitment as face-to-face programs. Your HIPOs can manage their learning at their own pace and attend virtual classes to refine soft skills, skills and industry knowledge. Learning programs also allow HIPOs to connect with other like-minded professionals, creating an expansive network of support and guidance that employees can turn to in times of need. Characteristics of high potential employees

Developing your HIPOs is crucial. It’s important to remember that leadership skills come with time, practice, and experience. By investing the right resources in the development of your people, you will create a future workforce with the knowledge, skills and ambition to take your company to the next level. Keep in mind that even when the above options are implemented, it is still possible for HIPOs to fail in their functions. If they don’t have the support and development they need to succeed in a leadership role, it can be difficult for their employees to succeed. Make sure they know they have the space to ask questions and develop their skills. There is likely to be a learning curve with a new position, but with the right guidance, they can succeed.

Remember that HIPOs are not the same as high performers. Properly identifying and developing high-potential employees can set your organization up for future success.

Having initiative, a desire to lead and being flexible in fast-paced environments are some traits you may find when identifying high-potential employees. It is important to develop these employees as they can directly and positively impact your company’s revenue to help you achieve your goals. By investing in development opportunities, offering mentoring programs, and creating individualized career paths, you can turn these HIPOs into future leaders.

Related Articles

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

Back to top button