I recently provided the keynote at a large event. I asked the audience of approximately 400 attendees a simple question. How many of you know that your company has a written strategy for talent attraction and retention? Fewer than 10 hands were raised in affirmation. I know that some people may not have raised hands in fear of such a large group. The attendees were supervisors and managers in a cross section of industries so you would expect that they would know if such a plan is in existence.
The fact that so many companies lack a written plan while unemployment (3.8% nationally) is so low, is borderline corporate negligence. If indeed a written plan is hidden within the walls of corporate human resources, the plan probably lacks efficacy and more importantly, proper implementation. I hope this information accomplishes two things. 1) It forces the discussion in C-Suites. 2) It results in more companies understanding the necessity for action and making a written plan a necessity.
The odds of an ideal candidate being unemployed at the exact same time you have an opening are very low. We are literally in a war for talent. The battles have started and the fight is taking place all over the country. Make no mistake; someone is after your best people. How do you plan to keep them? How will you perform without them? What are you doing about it?
Following are what I have determined to be the seven essential components of an effective talent strategy that fit the broadest of industry sectors. For specialized industries, there are one to three more components that I add depending on the needs of each organization.
These seven components in a written document serve as the battle plan during the war for talent. In fact, simply knowing what to do without execution makes you vulnerable to attack. If you are practicing business as usual, your team will be picked apart by companies that are hungry for your best people. Both action and inaction are choices.