Back to allBlog Posts.
Blog Post

7 Tips For Attracting and Retaining Great Talent

Our Chief Human Resources Officer, Sirmara Campbell, joined a panel hosted by the Daily Herald Business Ledger on attracting and retaining great talent. The conversation looked across generations, company sizes and industries, with panelists including Michael Larson, Director at Nuphoriq and Amber Johnson, Chief Communications Officer and Senior Research Associate at the Center for Values-Driven Leadership at Benedictine University. Below are seven takeaways:

Attracting (the right) talent:


Surface attractors and depth attractors: Surface attractors are the billboard-type perks companies use to attract employees like a company’s brand, reputation, compensation, perks or location. Whereas depth attractors are the values, purpose, and opportunities for career growth. Depth attractors are harder to communicate but are the genuine factors that will weed out the wrong candidates who may only care about the surface attractors.

In order to identify what the depth attractors are, companies should ask current top performers what makes them stay. Identify common themes from the list and be sure to add those to the website and in job postings.

Interviewing for skill-fit: Many companies focus on hiring for culture-fit, which is important, however don’t get blinded by someone being a culture-fit. Be sure to consider skill-fit. To do this, assign the candidate a project with a deadline to see how they deliver. Or you can invite them in for a shadow interview, having them do some of the tasks while shadowing to help identify if they have the skills to do the job. This also helps them identify if they actually like the role itself verses the company culture.

Explain the impact: Employees today don’t just want a job where they can achieve career growth, they want to make a positive contribution to society. Be sure to explain how the role is a path to making a difference, whether you showcase that on the company website, in the job description and/or during the interview process.

Keeping (the right) talent:


Showcase vulnerability. People want to work for people, not robots. Employees crave vulnerability from their leaders and want to hear about when their leaders were in the roles they’re in. They want to know when their manager made a mistake, and it’s not because they want to see others fail, but because they need to know they’re not alone if they mess up. The fear of failing stifles creativity and when employees know errors have occurred and people are still employed, they will be more willing to try something new.

Work-life integration: Encourage employees to be their true selves at work and give them the opportunity to blend work and life. Invite their significant others, families and friends into the office or to company events. The conversations around work-life balance have caused employees to feel as if they need to keep the two separate and give each the same amount of time commitment and attention. That quickly leads to burnout. When employees are able to blend work and life they feel less pressure and feel more fulfilled, so provide that opportunity.

Positive appraisal. Employees want to know when they’re doing a good job and need words of affirmation. They need the recognition. So be sure to give positive feedback regardless how small the win is, this helps the climb to the big win be less daunting.

Get their input: Ask employees what they want. If it’s something that would help them be better at their jobs and it’s feasible for the organization to execute, then do it. Not everything can be implemented, and be sure to communicate that to the employees, however, some things cost little-to-nothing and go a long way, significantly increasing employee engagement.

Identifying the right fit for your organization isn’t easy. If you’re hiring for your team, let us help you! Click here for more information.

SHARE THIS: