The war for talent is real, and upon us. Help wanted signs and job postings are seemingly everywhere. Many organizations struggle reaching growth plans because of an inability to attract and retain the right people. Henry G. Jackson, CEO and President of SHRM recently published an article titled The War for Talent is Now a Way of Life for HR. In the article, he says “Hard-to-find talent and hard-to-fill jobs are constants in the new world of work. So, to me, it is no longer a “war” to find and keep the best people; it’s a way of life.”
While much is written on how organizations can address this new talent reality, a great starting point is an understanding of what people look for in an employer. Talented people want to work for organizations with a purpose they can understand and be proud of, where their work contributes to the organization’s success and where their careers will grow. In a previous post, Attracting and Retaining Great People in 2017, I described several steps top employers are taking to attract and retain the best people, with special attention given to shared purpose and values, career development opportunities and cultural fit.
Since most talented people are not actively answering job postings, organizations are exploring new methods to attract talent. In the long run organizations will benefit by improving their reputation as an employer. How should organizations communicate their Employment Brand in a way that appeals to talented people? Perhaps with a message directly from the CEO, like this:
Dear Talented Individual:
We love our people. While most leaders say people are their most important asset, we believe it and show it.
You’ll feel the difference from the first time you visit our website. Our values, which guide our business decisions and relationships with our people, are stated clearly so we all know where we stand with each other.
Our goals are also published. We know where we’re headed and how we’ll get there – through our people. We share our goals so our people will be as excited about our future as we are. We’re also as excited about our people’s future as they are, even if their future is not with us. We help our people grow their careers while they help us reach our goals. We give them important work, provide great work space and technology, help them succeed, listen when they have a better idea and reward them every step of the way.
We also understand our people have lives outside work. We encourage our people to bring their whole selves to work, and spend guilt-free time away from work. We cheer their victories, share their sorrows and take joy in their happiness. We accept them as they are and support their dreams. We trust each other like family.
As with real families, we have our occasional differences. Most differences are easily resolved through open communications that are grounded in our shared values, goals and trust.
If ours sounds like a culture you can thrive and be happy in, please let us know. We would love to get to know you, and promise to treat you like family along the way. Even if we are not right for each other today, we are still interested in getting to know you. Tomorrow will be here before we know it.
Sincerely, Great Company CEO
If you were open to opportunities, would this letter appeal to you? Hopefully you would view this with enough interest to start a career conversation.
While a Talent Philosophy Statement like this can be a great employment branding tool, the culture, plans and programs supporting the philosophy must also be in place.
At Future State Talent, we help our clients create Talent Philosophy Statements, develop Employment Brands and embrace the new workplace reality. Please contact me to discuss the Future State of your Talent.