“Get the right people on the bus….Once you have the right people in place, figure out the path to greatness.”
Jim Collins – Good to Great

Top Performers Boost Your Bottom Line

As you are well aware, your top performers can be the difference between a company that is successful and a company that is not. But, you may not be able to convince the top performers to join your company.

What are the implications for your company, if you are unable to attract the top performers?

What are the implications for you as the Hiring Manager, if you don’t attract the best?

Did you know that the Top Performers Are Always Looking

Recent research from a leading research think tank stated that, “40-50 percent of top performers are looking for their next career progression.” This percentage is significantly higher than middle or low performers.

If they are looking, what are you doing to ensure you attract them to your firm?

Before you embark on a campaign to attract the best, please read this document and ensure you stay ahead of your competitors.

Top performers are different than average performers, both on the job and how they look for a new one. Simply defined, a top performer is a person who consistently exceeds expectations.

While you might be able to determine a person’s potential to be a top performer in 30 days or so, it takes at least a few months to determine if a person is a top performer. This has to do with motivation, team skills, and the consistent achievement of results.

So what are the top 7 mistakes that are unwittingly putting top performers from joining your company?

  1. No Job and Person Specification.

How often have you given a search firm a job order, without an accurate job spec and then become extremely frustrated when the candidates put forward don’t match what you are looking for.  How do you think the candidate feels? To them, it is a complete waste of time and energy attending an interview that they’re totally unsuitable for.

The best job descriptions articulate how you want the work to be done, and the moral climate in which the company operates not just an outline of duties and responsibilities. If you’re a fiercely competitive company that likes to pit teams against each other, say so. If internal or external customer service is critical, don’t assume that a candidate’s empathy is a given. I’d say the ‘how’ often matters more than the ‘what’, but it’s so hard to measure that most people prefer to ignore it. Do so at your peril!

  1. Be aware of the Internal Team

An advert is placed online that details the precise specification that you are seeking for this new role. You are inundated with enthusiastic candidates who are keen to be interviewed….

Then HR ask…….

“Are you sure there isn’t any internal talent that could be considered for a development opportunity like this?”

How do think the external candidates view the situation when they are told,  “sorry the position is no longer available as it has gone to an internal candidate.”

And when you consider that internal hires tend to do better than outsiders, promoting from within can significantly reduce your risk. You want to encourage and nurture the talent you already have, so work hard to discover what you have before you go looking for more. Besides which, it will certainly reduce your hiring cost and go a long way to retaining talent within your business and not losing it to your competitors.

  1. Align your values with your hiring process

Here is a List of the top values Employers Look for in Employees.

  • Strong work ethic
  • Dependability and responsibility
  • Taking ownership
  • Possessing a positive and ‘can do’ attitude
  • Adaptability
  • Honesty and integrity
  • Teamwork

There’s no point saying responsiveness and agility are important and then not providing feedback to the candidate on interview performance. If you say you value ownership, then ensure the decision maker is involved in the recruitment process so that decisions can be made without referring upwards.

If the values of the firm don’t match that of the candidate, no amount of money will get them to change their minds.  If they do join you, it won’t be for very long; which will be more damaging than them not joining at all.

  1. No Leading Edge ‘Toys’

When looking to attract technical people, the latest technology or a variety of processes will attract them. For sales people, a strong leading edge product will mean more sales and greater commission. What if your product or service is not considered leading edge or your processes are limited and dated? There are other factors that are just as critical to attracting top performers: Environmental factors are also important; such as caliber of management, no “A star” candidate wants to work for a “B grade” Manager.

  1. Not Wanting to be rewarded accordingly

Hiring Manager will often request a top or world class performer but are not often prepared to pay the top salary.  More importantly you need to understand what are the key elements of the compensation and benefits that will be attractive to them.

Hiring Managers that do not understand this are destined for failure when it comes to attracting the best, as it is vital that good people get individually attractive rewards.

In addition, profit share and bonuses, as well as other parts of the package play a key role.  Rewards are not always monetary, simply telling someone they are doing a good job and giving positive feedback is rewarding and motivational.  If you want a team that will break through brick walls for you, they need to know it is appreciated.

One solution would be to ask a professional Search firm for current and updated industry fluctuations or trends for your region and or specialist technology.

  1. Lack of Training and Development of the team

I am sure you have heard this before.

MD asks the Operations Director, “What happens if we invest in developing and training our engineers and then they leave the company?”

Ops Director answers, “What happens if we don’t, and they stay?”

Top performers are top performers for a reason; they work at it, so offer and provide continuous training and development.

  1. Having an Attraction plan

Although the top performers are always interested in career progression and where that might come from, they firstly have to be aware of the opportunity and secondly they will need attracting.

This attraction process is highly important to secure and land top performers but at the same time it is critical that a delicate balance is maintained to ensure they also earn the opportunity and right to work for your company.

To attract the best talent in the most cost effective and efficient manner, it is worth speaking to and engaging a specialist third party Search firm who can take the time to manage this balance for you and who will best represent your business. This doesn’t mean firing the newly prepared job spec off to local agencies in the hope they will find the right person on a job board and bombard the best candidates with numerous phone calls from different agencies. As the majority of Recruitment managers agree it doesn’t present the best image for the opportunity or your company brand.

Take the time and engage the best Search firm for your business, there are some key suggestions in next months insight to help. But if you want it in advance please let us known at insights@popsel.com