Gallup tells us nearly 50% of people will leave a job at some point in their career to get away from a bad manager. Bad managers turnover more talent than any other issue in your organization! If it wasn’t for bad managers, HR and TA would actually be an easy job!
We also know that working for a great manager can be career changing in a very positive way. I’ve worked for some great leaders over the years, and I always found it interesting that these great leaders and managers never had an issue finding talent. Talent found them!
In today’s world, most of us struggle to find average talent to come to our organizations, let alone great talent. On the recruitment marketing side, we are constantly working to get our employment brands and employee value props out in front of the right audience—all in hopes these potential candidates will take action and apply.
What you rarely see are organizations that actually use their great leaders as the main bait in recruitment marketing!
Most organizations have maybe 2-3 really strong leaders that 80% plus of the organization would say, “Given the chance to work for any boss, other than my current boss, I’d choose to work for: _(insert great leader name)_.” Once you know the few transformational leaders in your company it becomes fairly easy to put together a small recruitment marketing plan highlighting this talent.
Quick videos of direct reports talking about why “Mary” is such a great leader and what it’s like working for Mary. Mary herself talking about what she looks for in employees, and what she values on her team. Maybe a few great quotes from Mary about some of the talent that rocks on her team.
From there you build recruitment marketing content around one great leader in your organization. Why? Because that content, that story, actually transcends to all of your leadership in a way. Candidates will think how great it would be to work for “Mary” and in a way believe that all of your leaders are like Mary.
In the end, if we can’t be our own boss, we want to work for a boss that values us, develops us, treats us like a valued member of the organization, and makes us believe without our contribution the organization would be worse off. If you make me believe that I can come to work for you and find that level of leadership, I’m going to apply.
Why don’t organizations do this?
It’s not about one person, Tim, it’s about ‘our brand’, ‘our organization’, ‘our mission’… Organizations won’t do this because there’s risk coupling your brand to one leader. Leaders are people and people are flawed. We can make sure that the employment brand we put in front of you is never flawed, but not if that brand is one person.
Sometimes the best talent attraction strategy has some risk. I, personally, don’t consider this super risky. If you have great leaders, they have reputations to protect, so the risk is somewhat lowered by the fact they also have skin in the game. Plus, if you start doing this with two or three leaders, you can now spread that risk out a bit.
Recruitment marketing strategy 101 – use your strengths. Great leaders in your organization that everyone wants to work for, is a major strength!
FOT Note: We here at FOT like to think we get talent and HR at a different level. At the very least, we are probably going to have a different take than the norm. So it made perfect sense to ask SmashFly to be an annual sponsor at FOT, where they’ll sponsor posts like this one, allowing FOT contributors to write, without restriction, on all things related to recruitment marketing and how it helps organizations find, attract, engage, nurture and convert talent. Learn how you can proactively protect your organization from the talent crunch by building pipelines of engaged talent in our Talent Pipelines Solution Guide.
If you Google “Tim Sackett” you’ll find our Tim, and a truck driver chaplain. Our Tim is NOT the truck driver chaplain, although how awesome would that be if he was!? He is a prolific writer in the HR and TA space who just happens to also run an Engineering and IT contract staffing agency (HRU Technical Resources) out of Michigan. He also writes every day at his own blog, the Tim Sackett Project. Weirdly, he’s known as an expert in workplace hugging, which was kind of cool years ago, but now seems painfully creepy, but we still love him and he’s fairly harmless. Tim is also on the board of the Association of Talent Acquisition Professionals (ATAP), lifetime Michigan State Spartan fan, husband to a Hall of Fame wife, 3 sons, and his best friend Scout. He also wrote a book with SHRM called The Talent Fix, you can find it on Amazon.