The Make-Or-Break Factor
People are the crown jewels of the company…the cornerstone for your success…the make-or-break factor in today’s fiercely competitive marketplace. For you personally to be a high performer, and for the company to excel at wealth creation, you need a bank full of human capital.
Your job is to help accumulate it. So develop your skill as a talent scout—become an energetic recruiter—and help build an organization of high performers.
Recruitment must become a part of your everyday consciousness. Be on the lookout for talent all the time. Don’t wait around until you have a job opening. And don’t totally delegate the task to someone in Human Resources. Sure, somebody there may help, but you should contribute to their pool of candidates. Staffing decisions are too crucial to your own career future for you not to get involved. Supply HR with the names of high potential men and women you know, people you’ve sized up on your own. And when you come across highly capable people you can’t place in your own unit, refer them to other parts of the company where they might fit.
Where can you go to find talent? It can show up anywhere. On an airplane, in church, at your kid’s soccer game, at some conference or business meeting—you name it. The secret is to never stop scanning the social landscape.
Just watch people. Pay attention to how they handle themselves. Who stands out?
Make it a habit to casually screen the people you encounter. If they look promising, engage them. Make a social connection. Talk to them about their work, their career aspirations. Get a read on their competencies. Consider whether they could enrich the culture where you work.
Network. Ask people in your own organization to introduce you to their most talented friends and acquaintances. Track the newspapers and trade journals to see who’s winning awards, getting promotions, and being assigned heavy-duty projects. Study your competitors to determine who their top performers are. Then go out of your way to get acquainted with these people.
Of course, scouting for talent is only half of the job. You also must craft your selling message. Nail down your organization’s major points of appeal, so you can romance those people who show promise.
The idea is to make yourself a magnet for highquality performers. You’ll make the rest of your job a lot easier, while also making yourself indispensable to your employer.
"I thought it would be nice to get a job at a duty-free shop, but it doesn't sound like there's a lot to do in a place like that." —George Carlin