Recruiting – not hiring

When the pandemic began last year, and many parts of the economy hit a hard stop, I warned that how we treat our team members will long be remembered. They may not leave us in the moment, but the opportunity would come with the recovery. In case you hadn’t noticed, that moment has arrived.

Contacted on LinkedIn, or by recruiters they have never met, our best team members are being hunted and offered really sweet packages. And, when they get hired away because they can’t turn down a 20% increase in their pay (after all they have kids who will go to college if school finally goes back to in-person), you will have to pay their replacement more than your current 10 year employees with more experience. Argh!

What to do? First of all, say thank you. Seriously. Personally thank your team. Individually if possible but if you are communicating by video, look right into the camera and say thank you to your team for getting you through this crazy year. Acknowledge the parents (especially the Mom’s) who heroically kept our families and our companies going. Acknowledge the loss of family members and health that many suffered.

Double down on your great culture. Hopefully, all of the work you did in the last year to focus on your core strengths, to communicate well with your team whether in person or at the work place, to listen deeply to them and to customers, will make you an extremely desirable place to work. So, if a few team members are recruited away, you will be able to replace them with great talent.

Start recruiting now by creating or reinforcing a company presence on LinkedIn that shows who you are. Make sure your website is attractive to potential recruits. Remember, if they are now remote employees, they can work for some other company in another time zone. If you ever were in the driver’s seat on hiring, that has disappeared. If I haven’t scared you enough, read this article from Joe Galvin, Chief Research Officer at Vistage. And, if you company executive, and are not in Vistage, ask yourself, why not?