Nurture: key to maximizing human capital

 “Nurture is key to maximizing human capital”, says Tan Chuan-Jin, Singapore’s Acting Manpower Minister.


When it comes to maximizing human capital, it is important to consider how individuals feel and how they want to be treated and respected, said Acting Manpower Minister Tan Chuan-Jin at the Singapore Human Capital Summit on Wednesday.


The theme of the summit is "Future-proofing Your Organization" and participants discussed ideas and opportunities in human capital management in Asia.


Mr Tan said recent studies have shown the importance of focusing on human capital to improve business performance. However, there is a "significant focus gap" in talent development as Asian leaders are more focused on establishing human resource standards in recruitment and orientation.


Mr Tan said the government has invested extensive effort to help groom leaders and encourage discussions on human capital issues. He said the set-up of the Human Capital Leadership Institute exemplifies this and the Institute will continue to develop ways to raise the level of strategic leadership and human capabilities.


Mr Tan added the government will develop leadership and awareness of the need for good human capital management in small and medium enterprises (SME) as well, as SMEs are a critical part of Singapore's business environment. However, he urged business leaders to go the extra mile to make personal contact with their staff. Mr Tan said: “There're many best practices that we talked about, all these things that evolve around the economic structures, the business models, techniques, processes and so on -- they do matter a great deal. But at the end of it, like I said, it comes down to the people element, and maybe let's strip the human capital term out of it and maybe look at people as they are, and what do we do.


“So I believe that when you are able to win the hearts and minds of the people, there's really little else that you cannot do. It is this, if anything, that is probably the most important ingredient in building great companies, in building great organizations, and I daresay that it's probably the same in terms of building great nations as well."


22 September 2013