• 12/27/2023 10:27:17 AM

Talentra Blog: Panorama of 2023

As we leave 2023 behind, at Talentra, we view this challenging period for our planet as an opportunity for renewal, to strengthen our resilience, and to fortify our relationships. During this time, we fed from different fields, realizing how interconnected seemingly diverse topics are. This year was a period of expanding our knowledge base and broadening our horizons. In this compilation article, we take a brief look at the main themes we focused on throughout the year.

In 2023, we began addressing current topics on the Talentra Blog, reaching out to an international audience. The first article of the year was about the inclusion of games and simulations in work life:

Human Resources Gamified

“Gamification has the potential to revolutionize the way HR operates within a company. Companies that use gamification can boost employee engagement, making the employee experience more enjoyable, and improve the performance of their staff, with a better understanding of their compliance responsibilities and the company's objectives.”

We continued with the latest developments in education:

From Education 1.0 to Education 4.0

“Schools and universities must prepare their students for a world in which cyber-physical systems are ubiquitous across all industries if they are to continue to produce successful graduates. This entails incorporating technology into the curriculum and altering the learning process entirely.”

We questioned the function of boundaries:

The Art of Building Boundaries at Work

“Boundaries remind us that we are not victims of our circumstances; they give us the power to make choices. By setting clear limits on what is acceptable behavior, we can create a culture of respect and professionalism that benefits everyone. We should also remember that building healthy boundaries is an ongoing process, but by taking small steps and being mindful of our needs, we can create a work environment that is both productive and fulfilling.”

We highlighted the recent issue of widespread lack of focus:

Where Has Your Focus Gone?

“Is focus about discipline and willpower? Do we necessarily need deep focus? Or could it be a more critical skill to switch between different tasks easily?”

Then we experienced a devastating earthquake that deeply saddened us all and turned the world's attention to the fragile nature of our city lives. Along with the thousands of lives lost, the cultural heritage and memory of many cities were also destroyed. Life stopped. At Talentra, we paused too. We focused all our energy on the earthquake zone. We used our recruitment experiences voluntarily to connect earthquake victims with employers. We tried to emerge from the cracks with healing and renewal:

Equinox, Mourning, and Our New Normal

“In Antakya, one of the cities most affected by the earthquake, a collective mourning ceremony was held on the 40th day after the disaster to commemorate our losses. After a walk with myrtle bushes (Myrtus communis) and incense (aromatic resin), people left the myrtle on top of the debris.”

After the equinox, we wanted to make a new beginning. We discovered discovery, sought the hidden, and questioned where to start our search:

Discovering the Discovering

“The conventional paths lead to common places and take us to people we already know. We can’t find what we are looking for while navigating the safe paths of knowing; we look for what we expect to find, and instead of observing what we can find, we find what we seek.”

Right after our journey of discovery, we explored the connection between the concepts of work, play, and time:

On Work, Play, and Time

“With the proliferation of clocks in the 18th century and the precise measurement of time, working hours began to be more tightly regulated, leading to more of our own time slipping away. Thus, while the labor pressure increased, the nature of work itself changed. Work, once a form of social bonding and an expression of passion, had become a grim obligation, merely a means to survive, completely surrendered to and easily exchangeable.”

Our three-part series on the concept of Talent (Yetenek) held special significance for Talentra. With this series, we examined our work:

Reclaiming Talent

"In the biblical story, “talent” is an object of investment. It's a narrative indicating that we have moved into an era where maintaining a sustainable relationship with what we have is no longer acceptable. It tells the transition to an era where the exchange value has replaced the use value. In this new era, it will no longer be sufficient to preserve and use what we have frugally; we are expected to turn our possessions into investments and double their values.”

We uncovered the relationship between consensus and talent:

"Either our abilities to solve problems defined for us by others will be limited, or while collectively searching for 'where the problem is', real issues will further entrap us in our individual lives. Crossing paths in at least one of the thousands of choices we make daily, defining our problems together, could be a good start. Or at least deciding one of the hundreds of decisions we must make jointly, we add another stone to this beautiful start.”

We discussed how talent can be harnessed:

“The concept of talent is like a large pool where everyone can swim. But it does not dictate where in the pool or in what style one will swim. Everyone is afloat in some way; sometimes the water gets too choppy, forcing changes in position or style. The disadvantaged suddenly find themselves with an advantage. Those who can stay underwater for long periods, those who can change positions quickly, those who can hold onto rocks... The pool is an ecosystem in itself. Therefore, without defining external conditions, tasks, and goals, the concept of talent becomes superficial and loses its function.”

We touched on the value of labor and fair wages:

On the Value of Labor

"Wage labor found its place in economic history relatively recently. In earlier periods, heavy labor was performed by slaves and serfs in exchange for sustenance, while only skilled and free workers had the right to sell the products of their labor for a price. With the modernization of economic production and the spread of capitalism, the value of labor became more distinct, and wage labor emerged as a norm.”

We tried to look at the concept of value from the perspective of skilled labor:

On the Value of Skilled Labor

"Skilled labor determines the productivity, quality of work, and the capacity to create innovative solutions for businesses. Workers with the necessary knowledge, skills, and experience make fewer mistakes and work faster and more efficiently. This improves the overall quality and speed of the production process, reduces costs, and enables businesses to create more value. For businesses to compete in market conditions and continually innovate, investing in training to develop the skill sets of the workforce is crucial. Employing talents to their fullest and compensating them appropriately is essential."

We couldn't ignore the extreme global temperatures:

Hotter and Hotter

"Global temperatures, previously just spiking lines on charts that meant nothing to many, have now risen beyond a deniable average. The irony is that we only accept the reality of global warming when our bodies are scorched by heat! We can say that we are now in a completely new phase. We have left behind the denial phase of climate change. Now, we need to overcome other forms of climate procrastination to find real solutions.”

We delved into the depths of narrative to find transformation opportunities:

Creating a New Narrative

"The infection of the Earth by the human species is not just a historical inevitability but the result of certain choices. At the root of these choices lies a narrative that has given our civilization its current expansionist and alienated character. This narrative, consolidating different micro-cultures and micro-stories within itself, has obliterated diverse life possibilities, cultures, and civilizations, forming a single, grand, totalitarian, and centralized narrative…”

When temperatures a little bit cooled, we returned to our main topic, recruitment:

Modern Approaches to Recruitment

"In recruitment processes, not only candidates' education but also their aptitude for learning and their capacity for continuous learning are becoming increasingly important. In a world where current knowledge and skills quickly become outdated due to technological changes and the rapid evolution of industries, the ability for continuous learning has become an advantage. Whether candidates possess this capacity has started to become a critical factor in recruitment processes.”

We pondered how our work could align with the ecosystem without ignoring the crisis our planet is facing:

Biomimicry: Can Business World Draw Inspiration from Natural Processes?

“Ecosystem-oriented business models bring sustainability and efficiency principles into the business world, inspired by nature's cyclical and integrated structure. For example, a company can use the waste generated in its production process to meet the raw material needs of another company. This reduces carbon footprint and waste while creating collaboration and profitability. Ecosystem-oriented business models also consider multiple stakeholder relationships. With this approach, suppliers, customers, business partners, and even competitors add value to each other within an ecosystem, creating synergy similar to interspecies interaction and collaboration in natural ecosystems.”

We took a look at the increasingly popular transdisciplinarity in science and business life:

Transdisciplinarity: A Rising Trend

"The integration of knowledge and skills from different disciplines is key to creating more holistic, innovative, and effective solutions in both science and business. The transdisciplinary approach not only offers integrated solutions to current problems but also fosters the emergence of innovative ideas that will shape the future.”

One of the topics that deeply engaged us was fragility and resilience:

Resilience is the Answer to Fragility

“According to Zolli and Healy, resilient systems, even when they fail, do so gracefully. The key to this grace lies in mechanisms like avoiding hazardous situations, detecting initiatives, minimizing and isolating component damage, diversifying resources, maintaining minimum functioning if necessary, and self-regulating and integrating into the new normal after radical change. No system is perfect, in fact, the opposite: seemingly perfect systems are the most fragile, whereas a dynamic system that occasionally fails can transform into the most robust system.”

As Talentra, we supported the Bozcaada International Ecological Documentary Festival. We were overjoyed on this beautiful island. We shared our experiences and interviews on our blog:

BIFED Diaries and Talentra Interview

“A small and slow town on the Aegean coast... An international documentary festival woven entirely with solidarity by the local community... For the tenth time in Bozcaada, enriched by different cultures taking root, the festival's slogan was 'Life jackets are not under the seats', and its theme was defending the defenders. Supporting such a valuable festival was a joy for us at Talentra.”

Sustainability was a must for us:

About Sustainability

“Climate change, the reduction of biodiversity, water and air pollution have become priority issues for governments, businesses, and civil society organizations worldwide. As a result, 'sustainability', previously a somewhat background issue, has now become one of the main agenda items in almost all international meetings. The basic principles of sustainable development have been reinforced by international agreements like the Paris Climate Agreement, which aims to keep global warming below 2 degrees Celsius by setting commitments for countries to reduce their carbon emissions.”

We looked at careers from a different angle:

Towards a Winding Road: New Career Approaches

“Even salaried workers will become individual entrepreneurs, managing their careers like running a small business, " said Pierre Levy in World Philosophie (2000), of course, from a critical perspective. They will prepare themselves for innovations. The individual will be a business themselves…”

As the business world was shaken by high-level layoffs, we also looked at layoffs and business ethics from our perspective:

Layoffs and Business Ethics: Modern Dilemmas

“The execution of layoffs should be objective and fair, considering factors such as the employees’ performance, experience, and contribution to the company; ensuring transparency by informing employees about the reasons for layoffs, severance packages, and reemployment opportunities; and taking into account the emotional and psychological needs of the laid-off employees.”

As Talentra, we step into 2024 with renewed energy, an open mind, and a resolute will. We thank everyone who joined us on this journey and wish you an excited and hopeful wait for the next year. If we feel lost, we can draw inspiration from the dialogues of the Captain and his crew searching for a lost country in the Pirates of the Caribbean movie:

“We're lost, Captain!” “Then we are close.”