Jan 23, 2007

Do you think about the future of your employer brand? The world is changing, and I work with people to look at how that change can work for them now, so that they can evolve into the new style corporation that attracts talent rather than repels it. People want more freedom, want a voice, want a life/work balance, want a new style of business and unless they get that, then they will continue to become self-employed to try and define their own future. Here are some questions that you need to be asking internally now What are our core skills that we need to develop, and what functions could be outsourced? What do we mean by outsourcing...is that a network of homeworkers in your area? talent in India and Asia? management buy out of key functions? How do we build flexibility into our culture? For example do we develop people to lead/manage homeworkers? How do we give more autonomy to the younger generations? How do we use technology not as a transactional tool, but as a value added tool? How do we retain the older workers who have key talents, can we find a way of allowing them more freedom but retaining our access to their skills? How can we tap into the range of entrepreneurs that are out there NOW.....can we redefine the market place by not having any salaried workers and have all self-employed? What are the skills we will need in the future and what do we need to do NOW to attract the talent in the future? How can we serve our customer 24/7, and yet give more flexibility to our employees? How do we, as leaders UNDERSTAND the needs of the next generation? How much time do your leaders spend at colleges, on line etc understanding what the talent pool wants? Success will depend on redefining your business employment model. Companies are working on this now...I am working with 3 outstanding companies who have asked themselves.."If we were setting up this business today, what would our employment model look like?" So instead of trying to remould, they are working with the employees to break the mould! Now that brings employee engagement....
D'oh the Simpson guide to your first day So you spend a fortune on advertising, management time on recruiting, and then you lose the plot on their first day.... Today a friend of mine started at a new company, he was delighted the interview process had ignited his passion. He turned up and guess what.....his new manager had forgotten he was starting today. He was asked to wait in reception, and to occupy himself for the next 2 hours 10 minutes (!) he watched and suddenly felt like Bart Simpson, here's why D'oh if I am valued why did you forget about me? D'oh I have just read the beautiful values in the gorgeous frame...respect, valuing people, inspiring...mmmm not how I feel. D'oh I remember him saying that every person in this organisation is valued, so why do people not even acknowledge the receptionist as they pass her, despite her direct smile at them. D'oh if this is a great place to work why have I witnessed 2 separate gossiping sessions about everything that is wrong with the company in the reception area. D'oh if I was a customer would you leave me without even the offer of a coffee for over 2 hours. The list went on.... Then the manager arrived D'oh if you are the person who interviewed me, why not apologize? D'oh if you value talent and want to attract the best, why are you saying "Go home and come back tomorrow, you may be able to find some time tomorrow" This is a true story would you believe and a company that has a strong reputation as an employer! My mate is now disengaged, wondering whether he has made the biggest mistake of his career and already mentally leaving the company. This may be an extreme case, but first impressions count SO MUCH. I would always treat new talent as I would a customer. I wanted the first impression to be impressive...igniting their soul, and ensuring that they believed that they had almost fallen in love again, only this time with a company. Building loyalty starts from the day that the person is interested in joining the company and will last as long as you deliver on your promises. Will he stay with this new employer even if tomorrow is better- I doubt it, because now the company has to prove to him that they do live the values....and I don't believe they even realise it! Sad.

Anna Farmery

Social Marketing Architect, Speaker, Author and in spare time completing PhD on the future of the social business model

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