As a Talent Attraction Expert, Executives at companies sometimes confound me. They complain that they cannot find the best talent. Then they listen to the excuses from people whose responsibility is to source, identify, and recruit Top Talent.

What Are The Top 5 Excuses?

  1. “No one wants to move here.” Did they post and pray the right talent will drop from the skies? What creative methods have they utilized? Do those responsible understand that Top Talent Attraction is a SALES Process, not an Administrative process?
  2. “Local Talent does not want to work here.” Hmmm, my first question would be to ask why not? Does the company culture have a reputation as being toxic? Have the Executives examined what steps need to be taken to resolve this perceived problem?
  3. “Our weather is too bad.” I laugh when I hear that excuse. There is a town full of people who seem to believe it is better than some other towns. Have you ever tried to recruit OUT of northern Minnesota? There are aspects of living there that people love.
  4. “Our technology is old.” My first question is, “Does it still drive your business?” My second question is, “What technology would better drive the business?” I have recruited IT Professionals since 1981 when we called them Data Processing Professionals. Remember the association called DPMA – Data Processing Management Association? On LinkedIn, there is currently a COBOL Programmers group with over 15,000 members. Some people love older technology – Find them!
  5. “Executives accept our excuses.” Of course, no one would say that out loud. They do smile when it is acceptable behavior. Then, they do not have to work to improve the situation.

There are more excuses why companies cannot find Top Talent than there is Top Talent.

What is the First Step?

Create a strategy where you understand exactly what skills and experience you need. Then determine how you will source and identify them. If you are in a smaller city, will you pay for the relocation of the right talent?

In 1992, I was recruited to MCI Telecommunications in Talent Rich Washington, DC to recruit on contract for Commercial Billing IT organization. Recruiting for MCI in the DC area was EASY! They had a great reputation and paid fair wages.

Life changed in September of 1992 when I was invited to the Commercial Billing IT all-hands meeting where they announced that this organization was transitioning from Talent Rich Washington, DC to talent poor Cedar Rapids (at the time, I did not know what state Cedar Rapids was in). Then I was informed that my Vice President, Steve Brandenburg requested that I create the strategy to recruit a minimum of 120 IT professionals from Senior Manager to 12 college graduates to Cedar Rapids from January 1, 1993 to December 31, 1993. Then I discovered that Cedar Rapids had 3 IBM mainframe shops – and MCI was the largest by 3 times…

Some people would have said that the project was impossible – actually, almost every other VP in IT predicted my and our failure. After doing my research, I created a strategy that the executives, managers, and I believed just may work. Without much detail for this blog, We spent the last 2 weeks every month on the road with a team of 3 to 4 managers visiting 2 to 3 cities each week and interviewing 18 to 24 candidates per day. Over dinner, we decided who would receive offers and how much. After dinner, I sent an MCIMail at 2400 baud from my hotel room telephone line requesting filling those requisitions. Many times, I received permission to extend conditional offers that evening. Brian Naaden, our Director, was Amazingly supportive. Did I mention that twice during that year we had to work around the development and testing of new releases?

On December 31, 1993, we counted noses in seats – 143 new employees, ten of whom transferred from DC.

Nobody made excuses. We were focused on meeting our goal – and as a team, we were wildly successful.

If you would like a conversation on how to ATTRACT talent instead of using an Applicant Tracking System or HRIS to screen them out, we should chat. Call me directly at 435-714-4425 (mountain).

I am available to consult with your company to improve your Top Talent Attraction strategy. Attracting and integrating Top Talent gives your company an industry edge. The process is worth the effort by improving productivity, innovation, and profitability – Look at Google, Tesla, SpaceX, and Apple. Retaining Top Talent keeps your industry knowledge inside your company – instead of with the competition.

The Top Talent Attraction business model is my differentiator.  I focus on one client at a time and charge a flat monthly fee.  This model enables me to attract new talent to your organization while identifying and suggesting improvements to your company’s Talent Attraction process, including Manager Interview Training.

Learn how I coach my Career Transition Clients in my most recent book – Employee 5.0: Secrets Of A Successful Job Search In The New World Order  My book includes an appendix with action verbs and sample interview questions.

I help organizations Recruit, Onboard, Actuate, and Retain Top Talent.

See you on Tuesdays! Feel free to click on Follow Us to receive my #TalentAttraction Thought Leadership every week or to Share my Just Saying Thought Leadership with your Network through Twitter and Facebook.

Bill Humbert is available for Speaking, Talent Attraction Consulting, and Training contracts.  435-714-4425

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