PEAK Pyramid: A New Model For Talent Discovery

Having spent the last year working on the research and development of a new psychometric testing and assessment solution, it became clear that most of the existing frameworks for talent discovery fall short of the mark when it comes to building a comprehensive model that captures all core components. These core components are essentially personality, experience, ability and knowledge, and can in short be referred to as PEAK.

Most of the existing frameworks for talent discovery fall short of the mark when it comes to building a comprehensive model that captures all core components.

PEAK Model 2

(A) Ability

I firmly believe that ability is the fundamental requirement, and forms the basis on which all other competencies are built. Indeed, it is the base of the talent discovery pyramid. No wonder that ability is a commonly tested competency for admission at reputable educational institutions and high stake jobs.

Ability typically includes analytical skills, problem solving, critical thinking, and writing reports among other skills. These can be viewed as natural talents.

(P) Personality

Personality is the second level of the PEAK pyramid, and it is the force that shapes and directs one’s ability.  Personality traits may include persistence, integrity, attention to details, and so on.

Personality assessment plays a critical role in professional development practices in the corporate world today, as it also helps determining the cultural fitness of the candidates.

(K) Knowledge

Knowledge is the third component of the PEAK pyramid. It is generally what we get from formal and informal education, such as professional knowledge in accounting, marketing, and engineering.

In my opinion, knowledge is the easiest component to build and improve. Acquiring information is usually much easier than acquiring new skills or changing a persisting personality trait.

(E) Experience

Experience is a naturally developed qualification that evolves with time. According to, experience is knowledge or practical wisdom gained from what one has observed, encountered, or undergone. It is basically the formation of mental models that are developed to deal with new challenges based on analogy or similarity with previous practices.

Having studied the most popular talent acquisition and development products today, it seems that there are certainly some disconnection between job profiling and analysis, on the one hand, and the assessment solutions, on the other hand. An ideal assessment environment should definitely capture all these factors in a seamless way.

Success at discovering talents is essentially realized by thoroughly analyzing the job, identifying the right talent for it by assigning right weight to each of these core competencies, and finally matching them against the available talent database.

Relying on this comprehensive model is likely to increase the hiring process objectivity and increase satisfaction with the hiring process of recruiters and candidates alike.

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