Half of the fight in the war for talent is attracting great candidates to your company. The second half is getting them to stay once you’ve found the right person for the job. In today’s hyper-connected age, it’s entirely possible that the top performers at your company are approached on a weekly or even a daily basis by recruiters and competitors that want to steal them away for their own ends. Conditions have never been tougher in the talent market and your company’s staffing efforts should be focused on both attracting the right sort of candidates for your company and making sure that they stick around for as long as possible.
For some expert advice on getting the right people to work for your company, here’s Roberta Matuson, author of Talent Magnetism: How to Build a Workplace that Attracts and Keeps the Best. According to Matuson, when businesses go in search of a “perfect” candidate without understanding what sort of employee would be perfect for their business, they’re doomed to come up short. When it comes to hiring, there’s no such thing as a gold standard for talent. Matuson writes, “Right for you may be very different than right for me. Thank goodness or we’d all be trying to marry the same person!” It may sound a little simple, but in order to hire the right person for your company, you need to identify the qualities would make a new employee a success. To put it another way, you can’t really expect to bake someone the perfect birthday cake without knowing what their favorite flavor is!
Now to the second part of the war for talent: keeping the hires that you make. According to Matuson, retention is all about the people that you place into management roles at your company. Matuson writes, “Be very selective when promoting people to management and be sure to reward them for the right behaviors… In the past few weeks, several long-term employees have sent me notes, telling me that they just resigned from their position. Not one of these people had jobs to go to. They told me they simply couldn’t stand working for bosses who were either inept or jerks, or in some cases both.” As you probably know, not everyone makes a good manager. If you promote people into management positions for being ambitious or because they’ve been around for years, then you’re potentially creating a whole bunch of managers whose strength isn’t management. Bad bosses are about the most de-motivating thing in the world for employees and account for a huge amount of the turnover in this country. Find and promote people who will be helping your company and your employees be the best they can be!