Talent Management Dilemma and Distance between South Korea and the USA

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Talent management (TM) has attracted significant interest in the management field and it evolved as a North American paradigm and research tradition. Given TM has been mainly researched by Western scholars, commentators have urged that there should be a shift away from Western-centred TM to a focus on broader, more diverse contexts in order to understand the nature of TM in more depth. However, the challenges involved in the transfer of HR practices from one country to another leads to failure to implement effective TM. Based on a robust structured literature analysis, this paper highlights the key dilemmas when emerging countries adopt Western-origin TM practices because of different national contexts including economic growth rate and organisational cultures. This research contributes to the literature on TM in emerging non-Western countries by providing four research propositions. First, adopting TM may not be the best strategy for emerging countries when its economic scale and growth are not large enough to pursue TM practices. Second, there could be a high degree of difficulties to localise and practice effectively. Third, South Korean firms may face practical dilemma to implement exclusive TM approach. Fourth, South Korean firms may experience dilemma between position-focused and people-focused TM systems.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)335-355
Number of pages21
JournalInternational Journal of Export Marketing
Issue number4
Early online date14 Sep 2020
Publication statusPublished - 2020


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