This paper aims to provide insight into talent management and employee recognition variables, in an effort to understand if these management practices are, in a way, implemented in the Research Institutions in Qatar. It also aims to examine the link of these two constructs to employee performance and to suggest a pathway to improve the current practices, if any, in order to enhance the work performance. The sample of the study consisted of 180 full time employees who were randomly selected and surveyed using an online personalized questionnaire. The results of the empirical research uncover that talent management and employee recognition can significantly affect the level of employee performance, as well contributing to the organizational success and positioning. This study also found that talent management and employee recognition are interrelated variables that affect employee performance. Talent Management and employee performance are seen as strategic tools to implement strategic objectives and to enhance employees and organization’s performance. The study concludes with a set of recommendations for both practitioners and researchers working in Qatar and beyond. The results of the study emphasize the importance of managing employee recognition in shaping work performance. It seems to be individuals’ need for recognition, esteem and social status continues to be a higher order need irrespective of time and context. This paper is the first paper in Qatar and the Middle East that examines the role of talent management and employee recognition in shaping employee performance in the context of research institutions.