To Thine Employees Be True (Part Two)

How to win the talent war and keep star performers at your door

In the previous installment of our managed services series, we explored how to inspire high-performance talent through purpose-driven missions and employee-engagement strategies that are tied to personalized motivations. Now we’ll consider the role individualized retention strategies play in winning the war on talent and ensuring that star candidates are as committed to the organization as the organization is to them.

Rise above the fray

In the past, low unemployment rates, talent deficits, and evolving multi-generational workforce expectations have set the stage for an intense global talent war. The tables have officially turned in the candidate’s favor, and now more than ever, job seekers hold the cards to define and design their professional future.

The stakes are even higher for senior-level high performers who have recruiters knocking down their doors with the promise of lavish benefit packages, flexible work schedules, and fast-track career advancement. This is compounded by dynamic generational mindsets, which dictate that high-functioning talent quickly loses job interest due to the constant pursuit of passion, purpose, and connection.

As the demand for talent intensifies, candidates are increasingly dissatisfied with their decisions and keeping their eyes fixated on the future. Gartner suggests that 46 percent of new hires wouldn’t make the same decision again (38 percent intend to leave their job within 12 months) and only 7 percent have no buyer’s remorse (candidate regret). The study goes on to note that when business leaders design and execute a purposeful hiring process, the number of regretted choices decreases by 75 percent.

Armed with this intelligence, business leaders must up their ante as formidable players and strong contenders in the talent race. They must reimagine their talent management strategies with a renewed focus on the individual. It’s imperative to create customized programs with the unique motivations of a dynamic and diverse workforce in mind.

But how can you effectively rise above the fray and set your organization apart from competitors vying for market dominance? How can you attract and retain talent that is smarter, savvier, and choosier than ever before? The answer lies in the power of personalization.

Personalization for the win

To get (and keep) top talent, organizations must personalize the candidate and employee experience. This means that they must:

  • Clarify roles: Understand how each person’s contributions fit into the broader ecosystem and align with the organization’s purpose, mission, and brand promise.
  • Create compassionate cultures: Design a community that creates a sense of belonging, camaraderie, and connection.
  • Respect individual ideas: Promote an environment where all voices are valued and respected regardless of seniority; establish a place where “idea meritocracy” is promoted and the best ideas rise to the top regardless of one’s role in the organization.
  • Lean into customized learning: Encourage personalized learning methods, such as adaptive assessments, customized curriculum, individualized learning paths, and one-on-one mentoring sessions, that align with unique styles, challenges, roles, and career aspirations.

Ultimately, the future of talent attraction and management will need to be customized for the individual. If organizations fail to understand a desired candidate’s personal passions and preferences, they risk leaving opportunity on the table.

Every touch point along the employment life cycle—the interview, vetting process, onboarding, cultural immersion, and even off-boarding—impacts an employee’s perception of the company. Organizations that design talent management strategies through the lens of the workforce leave powerful impressions that make or break whether candidates decide to accept an offer or pursue other endeavors. Candidates that have a positive experience will relay that experience to their friends and social networks, which effectively opens new doors to additional talent pool possibilities.

These personalization principles lead to disruption-proof talent management, an adaptive, agile, and integrated approach that puts the candidate experience front and center.

As we examined in our last blog entry, the “service-profit-chain” asserts that internal service quality drives employee satisfaction, which in turn creates loyalty, productivity, customer satisfaction, and organizational growth. But if employees aren’t empowered with the tools, data, management structure, and hands-on-coaching they need to stay engaged, they may become disgruntled and start planning their next career.

Keep headhunters at bay

Organizations that meet employees where they are in their career journey while defining a clear path forward will reap the results of a powerful, engaged workforce. By creating personalized and engaging work environments, business leaders will keep employees happy and outside recruiters scrambling.

In our next blog in this managed services series, we take a closer look at the velocity of change and discuss how a workforce that isn’t adaptable isn’t valuable. You can also check out part one of this series here.