Leaders are well aware of the need for a pool of talented employees in their company, and they are all too familiar with the concept of highly skilled and experienced workers leaving either for more money, for a better position or for more meaning in their jobs. Employees at the top of their profession will naturally choose work environments that will encourage and nurture their skills, making it easy for them to flourish and succeed.
For years management experts have been saying that the culture of a company will have a significant impact on employee morale, efficiency and output as well as how attractive it is as a workplace to potential employees. It finally seems as though some companies are getting the message.
While the concept of workplace “culture” can mean different things to different people, everyone has a good understanding of what having to work in a “bad culture” might be, including a non-existent work/life balance, poor recognition of effort, bullying and bad management practices in general. On the flip side, the companies that most talented workers aim for routinely end up those that treat their employees as human beings, with real emotions, personal requirements and goals and dreams. This can be seen in Fortune 500’s Best Companies To Work For 2014 survey that found that the top 5 companies – including Google, SAS and The Boston Consulting Group – had found ways to tap into their employees’ needs. The initiatives and management strategies they promote range from having on site health care facilities, job sharing, compressed or flexible work weeks and philanthropy and volunteer programs.
A strong culture, one that the majority of potential job seekers would recognise and look forward to joining, will attract the right kind of employees with similar values, and work ethic.
Career Planning And Development
Another critical attribute of these companies in attracting top level talent is that they provide excellent career planning and development opportunities for their employees. Having a clear career path with a company, with chances to acquire additional experience, knowledge and skills along the way, can help to increase employee retention rates and overall job satisfaction.
No one likes uncertainty, and succession planning – transitioning out older workers and making way for younger generations – can help to create an environment where employees can see a real and interesting future ahead of them. Providing on the job training and professional development opportunities that are tailored to the employee are also effective ways to demonstrate how the company values its staff.
Unlike Google, not every company can spend large amounts of money on extra curricular activities or employee programs. However having perks such as an onsite canteen that provides free lunches or basketball courts will not necessary attract the type of talented worker leaders want or need. They need to look instead at the type of culture they want to cultivate and promote this through recruitment and selection, ongoing career and succession planning and development opportunities.