Talent Architects

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Talent Architecture

Advantage through business design



Talent Architecture is a new way of thinking about building businesses that win. It is based on the insight that people realities drive business success, and that failure to design organizations based on what people are truly like usually leads to business defeat. In particular, the beliefs and instincts of an organization’s leaders (its “Architects”) define which strategies and designs will create the biggest advantage.

Talent Architecture uses a science and data-driven approach to design and build companies in which the culture, people design, strategy and talent are all consciously “architected” to reliably and predictably envision, select and achieve goals that create lasting business success.




Our Services


Leaders face increasingly tough problems.

We know why these problems are happening.

We know what to do.




Here’s what we see…

  • Leaders aspire to big goals but don’t know how to predictably achieve them.
  • Leaders want a team they can trust but can’t find the people they need.
  • Leaders expect to focus on strengths and opportunities but spend their time on fears and threats.

Here’s what we do…

  • We help you understand your business and people reality.
  • We find the real problems standing in your way, and we diagnose why they are happening.
  • We create a practical design and plan to building the business and finding the people you need.

Here’s what will happen…

  • You have the team you need to win.
  • The right people are focused on the right things.
  • Your company is doing what it takes to win.

Here’s how we are different…

  • We are business builders. We see the big picture.
  • We are not strategy consultants, executive recruiters, or organization designers.
  • We start with the people, the most powerful and most lasting advantage you can create.
  • We are systematic, scientific, diagnostic, and continuously learning and evolving.
  • We challenge everything.


Our Purpose

Waste of Potential is Intolerable


We believe that the pervasive waste of human potential is intolerable, not inevitable
We exist to make a dent in that problem ~

We believe that this waste exists because the conventional wisdom about people and management is wrong
We exist to accelerate the change that is needed ~

We believe that breakthroughs in science, technology and practice are the ingredients needed for a revolution
We exist to bring those breakthroughs to as many people as possible ~

We believe that a systematic approach to combining these advances will increase competitive advantage,
productivity, individual fulfillment, and the equitable distribution of rewards
This is how we’ll make our dent ~

People want to do good work
This is our good work ~

About Us


We’re business builders obsessed with reducing the waste of human and economic potential.

We share a common culture of high standards, relentless improvement and scientific inquiry.

We’re clear why we exist, and are committed to doing what it takes to realize our purpose.


Jeff Hunter


Jeff started his career as an early employee at Conner Peripherals, the fastest growing start-up in history. He rose rapidly to take on global responsibility for HR services. He went on to start DataMain Technologies, which developed an innovative rapid application development toolkit. While CEO of DataMain he became obsessed with ways to increase his company’s performance, eventually innovating approaches to culture, organization design and hiring.

Jeff decided to take his career in a different direction when he decided that the culture and talent innovations he had started at DataMain could lead to competitive advantage. He became head of talent management at Electronic Arts, a Fortune 500 digital entertainment company. There he created and launched the idea of “Profitable Creativity”, an approach to reducing waste in work through better design, increasing creative ROI.

Jeff also started blogging and innovating new talent technologies and processes, winning multiple awards and recognition. His speeches to global leaders, his creation of the first Talent Unconference, and his guest lectures at Stanford have all focused on changing the way people think about talent, design and competitive advantage. This lead Jeff to become the Head of Recruiting for Bridgewater Associates, the world’a largest hedge fund and a firm renowned for its innovative approaches to culture and talent.

Jeff started Talentism to bring his track record of innovation, design and business building together in a new set of innovations focused on creating advantage through business design.

Jeff is married with three children and lives in Westport, CT.

Bud Bhattacharyya


Bud has helped many businesses across a wide range of industries think about management, innovation, and transformational change. At McKinsey & Company, one of the world’s top management consulting firms, he led teams that helped both Fortune 500 companies and start-ups solve their most critical strategic problems. His obsession was to get leaders, both at McKinsey and its clients, to focus more sharply on people as the real driver behind the strategy.

As a senior manager at Bridgewater Associates, the world’s largest hedge fund, he helped transform multiple areas of the business and implement cutting edge systemized approaches for managing talent. Again, he obsessed over how technology and systems were only as good as the people driving them.

Over the course of his experiences at these places and others (e.g. Capital One, Amazon.com, and Harvard Business School), Bud has seen how dozens of companies approach strategy, culture and management. He became convinced that the difference between success and failure is how strategically businesses think about their people, and how that talent strategy shows up in everyday practice.

Bud received degrees in Economics and Computer Science from Penn, and an MBA from Harvard. He lives in West Harrison, NY with his wife, Michelle, and two children, Maya and Rabi. Besides his family, his loves include jam bands, bird watching, and buffalo wings.




We engaged Jeff to apply his vision and the Talentism framework to what was a very difficult but pressing need for an early-stage venture – to identify and attract a Chief Technology Officer post-product release but pre-Series A funding.

Our success was both measurable and profound. Jeff approached our problem with a strategic mindset that was completely different than what a search firm typically does. Before even kicking off the search, he helped us systematically clarify what we truly needed from the role, define exactly what qualities would be necessary for a CTO to tackle challenges in multiple possible futures, and then clearly lay out the process to find and assess the right person. As a result, not only did we end up hiring an exceptional candidate, but as importantly, other people in our team came out of this with a deeper understanding of their own roles and the long term strategic issues facing the company.

I believe our experience with Jeff is a small example of what will happen as Talentism’s philosophy becomes adopted by companies around the world. It seems obvious to me now that most businesses needing to fill leadership positions should be thinking in this way i.e. not just about filling the gap today but how to think strategically about people as a fundamental driver of the organization’s long term design and plans.


Jeff met with us to help our company in the search for our first Chief Technology Officer. We had been searching for a couple of weeks before we spoke with Jeff, but continued to strike out.

Jeff sat us down and took us through his philosophy and process, in which we spoke about how it was critical to systematically align the search with our vision – our aspirations for the company, the role the CTO would play in achieving those, what problems they would need to overcome, how they would interact with the team, and what skills, both tangible and intangible, our company needed them to have. This process helped us clearly define the real position we desired in the context of our goals and organization. Jeff also mapped out the best strategy to go about finding the right hire.

As a start-up, Jeff’s process saved us an immeasurable amount of wasted time and capital searching fruitlessly or, worse, hiring the wrong person for our needs. Not only did we find the right CTO, but Jeff’s strategic approach helped the rest of the team better understand their positions and responsibilities within the organization.




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